Celebrating Aboriginal Education Month

November 1st marks the beginning of Aboriginal Education Month in acknowledging the rights of Canada’s Indigenous peoples as the original peoples of this land. The lobby display on the ground floor of the OISE building features a wide selection of Aboriginal education resources for community members, educators, and policy makers to deepen knowledge and understanding of Indigenous perspectives in supporting student success and well-being. This occasion celebrates the history of Turtle Island focusing Indigenous peoples to increase knowledge and understanding of the cultures, histories, experiences, and achievements of First Nations, Métis, and Inuit peoples in Canada. Throughout November, there are several significant dates for Aboriginal peoples, including honouring Indigenous Veterans on Remembrance Day and Louis Riel Day on the 16th. Aboriginal education for all Canadians explores the rich histories and contemporary Aboriginal realities to create more equitable and inclusive spaces in the classroom and workplace.

The display features curriculum resources for educators and classroom use. You can find teachers guides, lesson plans, and textbooks including Teacher’s guide: for the series Tales from Big Spirit, Aboriginal history and realities in Canada: grades 1-8 teachers’ resource Junior, Aboriginal beliefs, values, and aspirations, and Aboriginal peoples in Canada. In the children’s literature collection, dual-language or bilingual books are useful tools for students to learn a new language where an Indigenous language and English are featured side by side. Selected Indigenous language books include languages in Michif (Li minoush – Thomas and his cat), Cree (Niwechihaw – I help), Mi’kmaq (Nkij’inen teluet : kina’matnewe’l telimuksi’ki we’wkl atukwaqnn kisi amalwi’kmi’tij Gerald Gloade – Our grandmothers’ words : traditional), Inuktitut (Trip to the moon), and Mohawk (Í:iah ónhka sénha teieio’tenhserí:io tsi ní:ioht ne Warisó:se – Nobody can do it better than Warisó:se). Also on display are historical biographies and graphic novels that address Indigenous histories, contributions, sacrifices, and achievements including The ballad of Nancy April: Shawnadithit, The peacemaker: Thanadelthur, The rebel: Gabriel Dumont, and The pact.

In addition, the release of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action report in June 2015 highlights the findings and recommendations of a seven-year process on the extensive research and testimony from thousands of survivors of Canada’s Indian residential schools. In recognizing that education is foundational to the process of reconciliation as mentioned in the report, there are various reports and commissioned studies for educators and policy makers to expand cross-cultural understandings: Urban Aboriginal peoples study: main report, Ontario First Nation, Métis, and Inuit education policy framework: delivering quality education to Aboriginal students in Ontario’s provincially funded schools, Family is the focus, and A solid foundation: second progress report on the implementation of the Ontario First Nation, Métis, and Inuit Education Policy Framework: aboriginal perspectives bring the curriculum to life.

Interested in borrowing any of the titles mentioned? Please visit the Circulation Desk on the ground floor of the OISE Library to request for items in the lobby display.

About Lily Yuxi Ren

Graduate Student Library Assistant at the OISE Library | Master of Information 2018| University of Toronto
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