Issue 111

Community Engagement

Source: Canada FASD Research Network

Summary: This website provides links to a number of helpful and useful publications and resources for professionals and caregivers.

Exemplary Classroom Practice: Elementary

Source: University of British Columbia

Focus: K-8

Summary: This site has posted a considerable collection, and links to curriculum guides, lesson plans and resources to support Aboriginal teaching and learning in BC

Exemplary Classroom Practice: Secondary

Source: The Legacy of Hope Foundation

Focus: Secondary students

Summary:  Debuted in November 2015 at the Canadian Museum of Human Rights in Winnipeg, Forgotten is a modular exhibition that uses art, artifacts, poetry, images and text to explore the experiences of Métis children in the residential schools, experiences that have been, up until now, largely lost and forgotten.

Media

Summary: A Martin Family Initiative - Model Schools Literacy Project

Steve Styers, Director of Leadership and Community Action, speaks with Principals Debbie Michael (Ermineskin Elementary School) and Darryl Flett (Keethanow Elementary School) about their instructional leadership and community engagement in the Project. Original panel discussion at the Assembly of First Nations, Directors of Education Conference, 2018; repeated and filmed at University of British Columbia in June 2018.

Multi Media

Source: Isuma

Summary: About Isuma

In 1985, the Inuktitut-language video, From Inuk Point of View, broke the race-barrier at Canada Council for the Arts when Zacharias Kunuk became the first Inuit or Indigenous applicant ruled eligible to apply for a professional artist’s grant… Early Isuma videos, featuring actors recreating Inuit life in the 1930s and 1940s, were shown to Inuit at home and in museums and galleries around the world.

Over the next ten years Isuma artists helped establish an Inuit media arts centre, NITV; a youth media and circus group, Artcirq; and a women's video collective, Arnait Video Productions and complete films (documentary and drama), television episodes, and testimonials from an Inuit perspective.

Professional Development

Source: BCcampus

Summary: These guides are the result of a collaboration between BCcampus and the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training. The project was led by a steering committee of Indigenous education leaders from BC universities, colleges, and institutes, the First Nations Education Steering Committee, the Indigenous Adult and Higher Learning Association, and Métis Nation BC. We thank them for their guidance, support, and generosity. The content in these guides is authored by teams of Indigenous and ally writers from across BC. We thank them for sharing their knowledge and wisdom with others. We invite you to … learn more.

Related Links

A case study report on how one B.C. high school is mobilizing a whole-community approach to raise Indigenous graduation [report not available in French]

Source: Ed Can Network (CEA)

Focus: Teachers and school leaders

Summary: The Academy of Indigenous Studies is a ‘learning community’ within Mount Boucherie Secondary School, a part of Central Okanagan Public Schools (B.C. School District 23), in West Kelowna, B.C. This learning community offers a 20-credit high school study track available to both Indigenous and non-Indigenous students, which includes courses in Indigenous history, literature, leadership, culture, art, and Okanagan language, and is available to students of all grade levels. The Academy’s course content is transmitted through a pan-Canadian Indigenous lens – integrating Indigenous Worldviews, paradigms, and perspectives from across Canada – as well as through the lens and protocols of local Okanagan First Nations communities.

Leveraging key initiatives put in place by B.C.’s Ministry of Education, the program integrates students and course delivery within a learning community, or a network, surrounded by the support of Indigenous teachers, Aboriginal Advocates or Support Workers, and Aboriginal Tutors. The vision for the program – and that of the district’s Indigenous education policies – is co-created with local First Nations through Aboriginal Education Enhancement Agreements (EAs) and an Aboriginal Education Council (AEC). The program was a response to high rates of Indigenous student disengagement and dropout. Student cohorts past and present have traditionally had low attendance rates, low levels of achievement, and experience a variety of challenges including neglect, substance addiction, abuse, disconnection from their language and culture, subjection to stereotypes, and a multitude of inter-generational traumas resulting from the abuses endured by family members who were placed in residential schools.

The Academy of Indigenous Studies, and other initiatives led by the school district, have succeeded in raising the high school graduation rate for Indigenous students from 66% in 2012/13 to 77% in 2016/17.  The program is expanding to meet the needs of Central Okanagan Public Schools’ over 2,000 Indigenous learners.

Relevant Research

Source:   The Jen Reviews Team

Summary: Have you ever wondered if technology improves learning? Educational technology supporters and researchers tout the amazing benefits of incorporating technology in the classroom. Those who are on the fence about how useful technology is in the modern classroom provide several counterarguments that warrant further discussion about how to find a happy medium between using technology and traditional teaching strategies.

Technology has its place. The trick is using it to enhance learning instead of doing the same thing in a different way. This article presents a balanced perspective on the advantages of using technology in the classroom. Each benefit provides actionable tips you can use to put on your technology A-game in your classroom.