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Category: Classroom Practice: Secondary

Curriculum and Reconciliation: Introducing Indigenous Perspectives into K-12 Science

Source: Conference Board of Canada

Focus: K-12

Summary: In the years following the Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples, all kinds of teaching materials and pedagogical advice have been produced to help teachers incorporate Indigenous perspectives in their classrooms. However, without endorsement by provincial curricula, these resources have had limited impact. If education is to support reconciliation and effectively integrate Indigenous learners, it will require reforms that go beyond the production of new teaching materials. Curriculum reform has to drive change.

To better understand the state of science curriculum reform across Canada, we scanned Canadian K–12 science curriculum for references to Indigenous perspectives, and talked with a range of experts involved with science educational renewal.

Curriculum and Reconciliation: Introducing Indigenous Perspectives into K–12 Science briefly and visually outlines the landscape of school science curricula across the country. Several jurisdictions integrate Indigenous content, perspectives, and ways of knowing, while others have yet to include references to Indigenous perspectives.

Empowering the Spirit: Educational Resource to Support Reconciliation

Source: Alberta Regional Professional Development Consortia (ARPDC)

Focus: Intermediate, Senior

Summary: First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students experience greater success as engaged participants in learning that is authentic and connected to their personal values and life experiences. First Nations, Métis, and Inuit students, families, and communities need to feel that curricula honours their perspectives, histories, languages, and cultures.

This website provides support for all levels within school jurisdictions to increase awareness, understanding and application of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit histories, perspectives, and ways of knowing for the purpose of implementing treaty and residential schools education and Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action for education.

Rethinking our Food Systems

Source: Earth to Table Legacies

Focus: Secondary students

Summary: Rethinking our Food Systems

The Earth to Tables Legacies educational package is a collection of stories growing out of our conversations over five years. We have chosen to bring those stories to life through short videos and photo essays, so you can see the people and their diverse relationships with earth and tables, so you can hear their voices and imagine a dialogue with them. The Earth to Tables Legacies video introduces you to the project, the places, the people and some of the themes that emerged from the five-year exchange.

Climate crises, a global pandemic, food riots, diet-related diseases – all are telling us that the industrial food system threatens our health and the survival of the planet, and deepens systemic inequities, racism, and poverty.

These are the stories of food activists from Turtle Island (North America) – young and old, Indigenous and settler – who share a vision for food justice and food sovereignty, from Earth to Tables.

The Earth to Tables Legacies educational package offers 10 videos and 11 photo essays that use food as an entry to pressing issues, such as Indigenous-settler relations, food justice, food sovereignty, and anti-racism in the food movement.

Teaching Guides: Secret Life of the North

Source: CBC

Focus: Secondary Students

Summary: How has the North been impacted by forces of colonization and why have many Canadians not known about the history, geography, and society of the Inuit? This episode explores the history and geography of the North; examines the distinct culture, language, and politics of the Inuit; and recognizes the impacts of colonization on the Inuit.

Possible teaching connections include Geography, History, Social Studies, Indigenous Studies, Civics, and Anthropology. Learn how to use this resource here.

Native Land – Teacher’s Guide 2019

Source: Native Land Digital

Focus: Grades 9-12

Summary: Native Land is a tool that maps out Indigenous territories, treaties, and languages. We initially began in North America and have spread increasingly worldwide, and new areas are added regularly. This tool is not meant to be an official, legal, or archival resource. It is instead a broadly researched and crowdsourced body of information. It is meant to encourage education and engagement on topics of Indigenous land—particularly, where you are located. Native Land brings about discussions of colonization, land rights, language, and Indigenous history tied to our personal histories. We hope this guide makes you, the reader, want to know about the land you live on.

Secondary Environmental Science | Secondary Social Studies

Source: Great Bear Sea

Focus: Grades 9-12

Summary: The Great Bear Sea serves as a useful British Columbia case study to consider how development and management of resources in an area might be planned and implemented to ensure sustainability for generations to come. The Exploring the Great Bear Sea Environmental Science Grades 11 & 12 Curriculum Resource is a five-lesson unit of study that takes an inquiry-based approach to exploring themes of collaborative planning and research, Indigenous Knowledge, sustainability, and stewardship. Through this unit, students will take an in depth exploration of collaborative sustainable resource management and planning through the lens of the Great Bear Sea, addressing a variety of Big Ideas, content, and curricular competencies in the Environmental Science Grades 11 & 12 area of learning.

Great Unsolved Mysteries

Source: University of Victoria

Focus: Intermediate/ Senior students (and post secondary)

Summary: Curriculum Connections for Ontario

A guide for teachers is available for each of the 12 Great Unsolved Mysteries in Canadian History, and includes background materials, activity sheets and detailed lesson plans for one or more grade-specific units for elementary or secondary students. Some suggestions are relevant for college and university classes. Just fill in our online registration form and download the guides in PDF format.

There are short, focused, age-specific, single-lesson MysteryQuests lesson plans relating to one or more of the Mysteries.

You can also download classroom posters.

Indigenous Perspectives Education Guide

Source: Historica Canada

Focus: Grades 6-8

Summary: Popular narratives of Canadian history have most frequently been told from the perspective of European settlers. As a result, Indigenous experiences have often been neglected or excluded from the telling of our country’s history. For a more comprehensive understanding of Canada’s history, it is important to examine it from Indigenous perspectives. Doing so requires students to explore the depth, breadth, diversity, and regional variation of experiences of Indigenous peoples in the land that is now Canada. It is also necessary to examine the legacy and consequences of colonialism and the repressive policies to which Indigenous peoples have been subjected.

This guide aims to engage students in thinking critically about our historical narratives, and help them consider how both individual and collective worldviews shape – and are shaped by – history.

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