Educational Resources

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Category: Multimedia

Elements of Art – Exploring Textures in our Environment

Source: Indigenous Education: The National Centre for Indigenous Collaboration

Focus: Secondary students

Summary: Through the sharing of stories and ceremony, this lesson plan teaches texture as an element of art through hands-on learning in the outdoor environment.

The lesson explores the connection between art and life. It links Indigenous values, such as our connection to the water and our protection of Mother Earth, to artistic representation and to ceremony.

Kainai LandScapes Photo Essay

Source: Indigenous Education: The National Centre for Collaboration

Focus: Secondary students

Summary: For this video, a group of youth took photographs to illustrate their connection with the land, their community, and culture.  Their photographs were then combined to create this photo essay.  The lesson plan and photo essay CityScapeswere used as inspiration for this project in a rural setting. 

Urban/Rural Indigenous perspectives of the landscape, while co-opted by their surroundings, reflect Indigenous meaning.   Within CityScapes, buildings, hardened by the lights, are laced with images of past family members and Indigenous memory.  In Kainai LandScapes,rural scapes shift with rivers, waterfalls, sunrises, and sunsets punctuated by wildlife. These two backgrounds are equally and indelibly intertwined to form parts of the newly emerging Indigenous expression of Canada.    

To see the other youth photo essay connected to this project, watch CityScapes Photo Essay.

Sacred Stories and Sacred Songs by Joseph Naytowhow

Source: Indigenous Education, the National Centre for Collaboration

Focus: Secondary students and community

Summary: At the Saskatoon Elders Gathering in January 2020, Joseph Naytowhow shared stories and songs with the accompaniment of the drum. Naytowhow is a singer, songwriter, storyteller, voice and stage film actor, from Sturgeon Lake First Nation. He was invited to share Cree stories and songs at the Saskatoon Elder’s Gathering, hosted by First Nations University of Canada. Naytowhow beautifully weaves stories from his experiences with songs that he has written or has come to know and, in doing so, leads participants in singing and chanting along in Cree. He reminds us that, “we are from the Earth, and the land is our mother.”

Carving canoes, reforming the Indian Act, gathering wisdom from Elders: 6 films by Indigenous filmmakers | CBC Documentaries

Source: CBC Gem

Focus: Secondary students

Summary: Documentaries about resilience, art, and reclaiming history.

-Carving canoes to serve communities

-Educating and advocating through documentary film

-Fighting sexism in the Indian Act

-Carrying on history by caring for Elders

-Using comedy to ask tough questions

Métis Memories of Residential Schools: A Testament to the Strength of the Métis

Summary: This powerful educational resource was designed to acknowledge, highlight, and share Métis residential school survivor experiences in collaboration with respected Métis Elder Angie Crerar, Author Jude D. Daniels, Canadian artist Lewis Lavoie, Métis community, Rupertsland Institute, and Werklund School of Education.  Mural image inspired by Métis Artist Samantha Pratt.

Haida Arts and Technologies

Source: Canadian Museum of History

Focus: Secondary students

Summary: Arts and technologies of the Haida are intertwined and deeply connected to the oral traditions and resources of Haida Gwaii. For millennia, Haida artists and makers have created works that are both useful and beautiful, sourcing materials locally and through trade with neighbouring nations. This package explores examples of Haida cultural expression and technologies, including bentwood boxes, weavings, and carvings in argillite and silver, in order to showcase the continued innovation of Haida artists and the standard of excellence to which Haida artists hold their work.

While the works that we see in this package are attributed to Haida artists, they share similarities in style and function with the arts and material cultures of Indigenous communities along the Northwest Coast. Trade and exchange remain key to the development and innovation of artistic traditions on the coast, as elsewhere.

“The Three Sisters” and “The Birch Bark Canoe”

Source: Indigenous Ideas for the 21st Century Classroom

Focus: Secondary students

Summary: The Three Sisters

Rooted in story, this twenty minute video takes us to the beginnings of agriculture and illuminates the connection of all living things.  The accompanying book shows how a range of educators imagined using The Three Sisters in their classrooms. From Northern Manitoba, to downtown Winnipeg; from senior year’s mathematics, to an early years inquiry project; from a garden in the middle of a school to a garden in the middle of a parking lot, the responses were extraordinary.

Birch Bark Canoe

This resource package provides teachers with a video and accompanying curricular connections. It was designed to support Manitoba classrooms in honoring the contributions of First Nations and Métis peoples and to educate future generations about the art and science of the birch bark canoe.

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