My name is Laura. I am a secondary teacher in an alternative school which deals with “at-risk” students who have been failed by the mainstream education system in one way or another in their careers as students. This site has been set up as a resource for teachers to encourage thinking about best practices in education, with a focus on incorporating Indigenous culture, stories, and teachings into our curriculum.
This site is a work in progress and it has different sections to act as a resource for all teachers at the intermediate and secondary levels. The first section, best practices, provides a rationale, a background and some resources concerning best practices for incorporating First Nations, Métis and Inuit content and practices into their classrooms. The second section will be designed as a place to find unit or lesson plans for specific topics. The third section is a glossary of terms. The other two sections of the page are meant to become a resource bank for both intermediate teachers, and secondary teachers.
As education evolves, so does the role of a classroom teacher. We are constantly trying to stay on top of the “latest and greatest” methods of increasing success among all of our students. I have spent a great deal of time thinking about and attempting different methods to improve student success throughout my career. What I have discovered over the 10 years that I have been teaching is one of the best ways to promote success is to re-interpret how success is measured. For each one of our students success can mean a very different thing. It is through my investigation of Indigenous teachings that I have discovered a very different form of education from that which I was exposed to my entire time as a student– one that is much more holistic, one that focused on the individual student than an entire class.
“Holistic education is a philosophy of education based on the premise that each person finds identity, meaning, and purpose in life through connections to the community, to the natural world, and to humanitarian values such as compassion and peace.” http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Holistic_education
This premise of holistic education is deeply and firmly rooted in First Nations, Métis and Inuit tradition. Each group has its own interpretation, but the core belief and method of education has the same foundation.
Below you can view the different models in PDF. these models were taken from the report on Redefining success in Aboriginal learning by the Canadian Council on Learning 2007