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  1. 1. flr,I t"fI ,, ,,:.::.I,1.: ,:,,:,;-IIf r".rIIIIIIr € "wI!r
  2. 2. HelPing Hands " Helping Honds"- This title depicts a baby sitting and holding an eagle feather. He is waiting to be taught and brought back to thetraditions of his grandparents. Around his head are helping hands handsin the four colors, red, white, yellow, and black. The helping signifies the realization that educators of all walks of life, need to focus on the needs of our First Nation children; teach them aboutwhom they are as First Nations people and bring them hope for the future. Each child is a gift from the creator. They are our future. JoanHelping Hands was made by 2nd year HBed Aboriginal Student Esquega. Layout and Editing: Callen Banning Editing: lolehawk Laura Buker
  3. 3. L-- ehead UNIVERSITY Lakehead University 955 Oliver Road Thunder Bay, ON P7B 5E1 Canada Phone (807) 343-8110 Fax (807) 343-8023
  4. 4. r laleneail Uniucrslu llB[ll 2130 - Teachers oJ A[original learners July 2009The second summer of Honors Bachelor of Education in Aboriginal Education coursesbegan on Monday, July 6th, 2009. This yea; the HBED 2130 course focused on learningstrategies that are currently working for Aboriginal students and how as educators, wecan support the "whole child" to be successful in our northern classrooms.The uniqueness of the HBED program is defined by this First Cohort of Educators thatlive in the vast north where the landscape is formed by lakes, streams and forests inthe communities they call home. The rich narratives shared in this cohort are atestament to the importance placed on language, culture, the land and the community.Each educator in the HBED program is deeply committed to the success of each childthey teach, as well as, the need to inspire and "lift up" our childrens dreams andsupport them through graduation and beyond.fhe "Sharing Our Thoughts On Education" publication resulted from thoughtful dialog,discussions, presentations and reflections within our group. Together, we place ourchildren at the centre of the learning circle with this written work.It has been a privilege to continue this journey with the First HBED Cohort. Our childrenare in good hands with these pathfinders.Respectfully, Professor Lolehawk Laura Buker
  5. 5. Sharonfllen Many students often feel a sense of racism in the classroom and retreat into themselves and refuse t Honouring and Nurturing Positive Self Esteem to engage in the learning environment of the classroom. This point is crucial to the success of the students; teachers in these classrooms must be IThe first week in class we discussed theimportance of creating a learning environmentwould honour and nurture positive self esteem for that aware of this transition and come up with strategies to make the students feel welcome, honoured, wanted and resPected. Istudents. There were discussions on different Sadly, in our society today many of our youngapproaches and different presentations from the students are subjected to harsh social problems Tclass. I found the group participation aspect andthe sharing to be verY insightful.When instilling honour in the classroom, the and at the same time trying to successfully learn all these exciting initiatives of honour, respect, dignity, culture, Many students are hurting and need Iteacher must have a sense of who the studentsare, to relate to the students. Most often thestudents are not familiar with their own identities someone to talk to, not necessarily to have social services to intervene but to have someone listen to them and to have them know they are not alone in Iand do not have a sense of pride in theirbackground. Classroom guests such as elders,parents and community members and honouring their troubles ln some instances, a student will trust a teacher who is not of the community, and once the teacher leaves and goes down south Ithem for their contributions and maintaining ourculture and identity will provide the students theopportunity to learn to begin what honour is and never to return, the student experiences a sense of desertion. The students are our future and they are speaking to us by way of their actions and we I need to listen to the students By listening to thewhat it means to be who they are and where they come from. students and including them I believe this will boost their self esteem Itt has been said time and again that Aboriginalstudents are visual learners, so to instill a sense of I recently went out with some students who were on a camping trip; they enjoyed the teachings of Ihonour and pride the teacher could perhaps praisethe students verbally on a daily basis, to encouragethe use of manners "please" and "thank you". the land, the fire side stories and welcomed the responsibilities that were given to them There was no mention of junk food, television, gossip, tStudents learn what they see; the students learnwhat they hear and will thus practice what istaught thr:ough their listening. internet or XBOX 360. The students engaged in this type of learning, there were hardly any behaviour I instances and most of these students had not been in an outdoor setting as much as they could be Students enjoy sharing once they have reached their comfort level. considering the remoteness of our community The I emphasis on being in the outdoors and the culture Mas well received. , the i",#,:,6iieselfabout how to go about the best way to rn. As lrrii..t$broaah a student. The phrase "treat everyone t how you would like to be trdated" is important what they we.reused to growing up in.
  6. 6. bilingual in order for them to understand my language. We had a review in class, and after 40 Ilaine BoyGe minutes the class was over. lt was quiet and I quietly stepped out of the classroom and thinking maybe they will respond tomorrow. As I enteredMany of my students learn best through stories, my next classes, I was welcomed and greeted withnarratives, and our old and new stories. As a Native "Booshoo!" I stand in front of them and said theLanguage Teacher, I had been inspired by my same thing to them. "Booshoo Niin Elaine Boyce,students as they learn to speak and write the niin ka anishinabay kekenwamageekway ohwayOjibway language. I have learned that they are shy keenoniwin" and then I said, "Giin tas, shinto share it with others. They can speak their aaniigiin aashinigassoyan?" They respondedlanguage. The most meaningful way to support our quickly and answered my questions. We completedaboriginal students is to know their attitude and all work tasks and we all had a good day. My daybehavior. Some students like to share stories. For was easy. They were amazing and showed theirinstance, stories about going on outdoor confidence. Thats when all the students started toadventures, funny stories, sad stories and scary communicate with me. I am their role model,ones. Students will share their laughter and jokes friend, mother, sister and teacher. When we aretoo. Some students will help and work done our class I say, "Bahnamah wabakn Miinawahcooperatively together. Students learn to show gawbamin." They respond to me with Ah haw."respect and show kindness to others. Some Translated in to.... I shall see you again tomorrow!students are polite and showing their responsibilityin the class. Students socialize in gathering places, Meeway, miigwetch.preparing for the work and taking turns. I havelearned that the youth in my classroom respect meand trust me like a mom, friend or big sister.Students show their support and comfort whenthey know that I am down or quiet. These studentsare angels and they are very intelligent.Everyday language: Ojibway everyday and greetingto them saying "Booshoo Kaakeenahl" Theirresponse is Booshoo Elaine.When I first started teaching in the fall, I thought"What am I going to teach them to learn in the .::,11:Ojibway language in the first term? My teachingstarts with introductions and conference, The nextstep is to start on the review, a.pd my first day inthe morning class, I see, I hear, I think and see !h1$students in front of me and I said: "Boosho! NiinElaine Boyce, niin ka anishinabay ,,r- -lke ke nwa ma geekway ohway kee n o n iwi n.11. we n.-t,,.. :l,1on to say: "Giin tashiip,..4p,niigiin aashinigassoyan?" ,Students looked at each"bthe;Lwith surprised lookson their faces and 9,.-5j ow what I said.The students were kln
  7. 7. Idueation Brings I U$... I I Curiosity Hopes AdjustingDreams Routines Collaboration Rituals Limits CompromiseAnxiety Fantasies lndependence Competence Sense of belonging Encouragements Self-Advocate Motivation Mentorship Transition Dynamic Contentment Decision-making Harmony Opportunities Responsibility Acknowledgement Rewards Self-evaluation Compassion Challenges Self-ldentity Enthusiasm Dedication Determination
  8. 8. Gloria Goaster My Own Reflection Education always plays a role in my life. Children in my community inspire me. They inspire me to do more in education. The more I can do for myself, the more I can offer to them. ln the chart, I enclosed a circle diagram Education Brings Us... lt consists of four parts Elementary School,HighSchool,College/University,andLife. lneachsection,ithaspointsofwhatastudentgoesthrough. lhaveused a similar diagram which I show to the students. I drew the four parts as an Educotion Focilities and whatgrades each section has. I explain to the students, this is what you will do as you grow older. The visual chart makes it easier for the children to understand why Education is important. tix s1 : **" f,.. rkk
  9. 9. Ghclul llane had finished Grade Two, they knew no matter what came ahead they could do it. t Mrs. Miller Finally, Mrs. Miller was genuine. She did what she said, and she walked her talk. Mrs. Miller was IThe first image that comesthe to mind after reading phrase nurturing positive self-esteem is Mrs.Millers class. Mrs. Miller taught Grades One and dependable, reliable and trustworthy. People cannot mimic being genuine. Mrs. Miller kept our secrets and could be trusted. Her classroom was ITwo back in the early eighties. Her classroom wasa fun, comfortable place that children thrived in.Mrs. Miller would encourage and cheer on her an extension of the woman she was. Children thrive and flourish in an environment that is safe, comfortable and giving. The students of Mrs. Istudents, but at the same time silently commandrespect. She was never forceful, loud ordemeaning. Mrs. Millers class was always open Millers class are concrete products of a wise teacher. Iand available for students.There are several key elements that definitely Mrs. Miller definitely knew the importance of creating a learning environrnent that honours and nurtures positives self esteem for her students. Icontributed to the success of Mrs. Millersstudents. Mrs. Miller was organized, kind andgenuine. ln her class there were clear expectations Twenty-eight years later Mrs. Millers classroom still is a vivid image in my mind. That class was a turning point; I realized that I have worth. Iof her students and also, of herself. Mrs. Millerembodied the ability to make all her studentsrecognize their own worth. Hopefully, one day I too will embody the qualities that draw the best out of my students. Mrs. Miller definitely impacted my life. lt is my hope that one IFirst, Mrs. Miller was organized. Her classroomroutines were carefully planned and included day a girl, just like me, will remember a special teacher whose name was Mrs. Dane. Istudent input. There was just enough formal sitdown learning conjoined with informal playlearning techniques. Mrs. Miller captured the Iattention of all the students. She was able to causea hunger to develop in her students for learning. I IMrs. Miller would use different techniques toassure that all her students grasped the conceptsfully. When a child struggled she would spent the Itime to encourage and help the child grasp thelesson. Everyone in her class was very smart. I was .kind. Her kindness was not surface ii: irr. irll:;, : .of her heart. The her fair
  10. 10. flngela laco[ We successfully kept the language alive within our younger students. Our language is the most important part of who we are as Aboriginals. Bringing Back Our Ways During the last half of the school calendar the My name is Angela Jacob and I am from Webequie, teacher and I made plans to invite Elders to come Ontario. I have been working at Simon Jacob to our classroom to teach. To get our students Memorial Education Centre for nine years. The first ready for the elder visits we talked to the students three years I worked as a Tutor Escort and then about why it is important to respect our elders in moved on to be a Classroom Assistant. I have just the best way the students could comprehend. The recently graduated from the Native Classroom classroom teacher and l, the classroom assistant, Assistant Diploma Program from Nipissing role modeled how to show respect by using good University. The reason why I took the program was manners. We taught them how to say Hello in the to further educate myself in the field that I am language and we also focused on showing the working in. I believe that we can make a change in students to use their listening skills. helping our aboriginal students learn by creating a learning environment that honors and nurtures The elder visits were successful in our classroom positive self esteem of our students. as the students enjoyed having them in their class. Each of the elders that came to our classroom This year I worked with the Kindergarten Teacher taught the students about our lifestyle and our for the Junior and Senior Kindergarten students. culture. The students liked listening to the stories We had two classes; the Junior Kindergartens came that the elders told and they really liked learning in the mornings and the Senior Kindergartens came the games that the elders played in their in the afternoon. We had thirty-five students all childhood. Our students began to look forward to together. One thing that was noticeable with these the elders visits and ask us when they were four and five year olds was that almost all of these coming back again. students were fluent in the English language. All in all, I believe the students school year was a As the months went along, the teacher started positive and a successful one. By creating a teaching in both languages (Ojibway and classroom environment that shows respect for our English).ln circle time she asked them questions in aboriginal perspectives benefited both the both the languages. First, she would ask a question teachers and the students. The students learned in iii Ojibway and then she would explain to them in their own environment which made them seem just said. I found that the eager to learn their own native tongue and learned:iEnBlish what she had.Students paid more attention when spoken to in a lot of knowledge from their Elders teachings. I ffijibway language. Mainly because they were believe that if the teacher is willing to make Jeatning new words in the language. changes in promoting our aboriginal lifestyle both *& the students and the teacher will have a successful When we did calendar time, the teacher made school year. in that she would teach the calendar in both eagerly participated in
  11. 11. t "Why we should learn our Aboriginal language."I Geeilia laco[ I know most Aboriginal students are losing their languages, and it happens everywhere. I know it is hard to understand where individualfamilies comel I believe needs that teaching our Aboriginal language to be student centered and student responsive. Students that learn actively seemed from. Another quote: "l think learning my language will help me understand better what is means to be First Nations." This is hard work to learn,I more engaged in using the language.They focus on the meaning of the words, phrases and everyday speech. Learning the language from ideas, especially if you are a non speaker. There are teachers out there who are willing to teach the language. I am still speaking my own language andt interests and unique talents of each child seems to be a positive approach and strategy. willing to teach it to whoever wants to learn it from me.I When we read chapter five, "Learning Strategies for Aboriginal Students" in the book Our Words, As I reflect on my own education journey, I now understand that my learning is informed through observation and demonstration. We have excellentt Our Ways, lve learned about using the effective instructional strategies that will support the teachers here at Lakehead University and I hope learning needs and strengths of our students. they will continue to do a good job for the future of our people and other nations.t The teachers relationship with the students is at the heart of Aboriginal approach to education. ltI can also be in the other way too. I was in this class once and when we were put into groups of four, and then each group read the chapter. The teachert gave us a question to answer to that chapter. I found it much better to understand a concept when working to together to gain knowledge.t There was this teacher I knew who taught grade one. She was of non Aboriginal status. She knew where the students came from and did a lot of reading to her class. She had interesting centersT put up for hands on activities. She was also aI mentor to me. She had high expectations on her teaching style for students to learn to read. Because of this, I know the Aboriginal students shet taught are now good readers in our community. Another strategy lve learned and want to do in theI classroom, or show the parents when I go back to my reserve, is the P-M-l chart. This is a very interesting format for organizing information, andt evaluating the students knowledge and ideas. JL(ILIEI lL5 Ldl I use this tool to LullELL LjdLcl Cll lU , Students can U)E Ll ll) Luul Lu collect data and organize information to make informed decisions. i tii.!I ., .,..::,,i. .,:-,*:,:,,;u{*,,:d, _:
  12. 12. loan tsuuega effects of drug abuse. I I can envision a classroom with many profiles on Giving our Children a Voice the walls of Aboriginal role models that have already endured and achieved successes. We can IAs educators, we need to learn the importance of show them that we have our own role-models tocreating a learning environment for the needs ofour aboriginal students that honours and nurtures look up to and be proud of. These may be anyone from doctors, lawyers, dentists, trades people, Ipositive self-esteem. We set the stage for our teachers, sports figures, artists, actors, people whoyoung learners to come in and be who they areand to feed their thirst for knowledge. A student are not necessarily famous but have also continued their education to reach their goals. We also have t to highlight the successes of our students and giveshould feel a sense of belonging before they canthrive in the classroom. Once that student hasbecome comfortable within the class, only then them incentive to work towards their own goals. lncentive could mean, praising them in the school I newsletter or giving them prizes or certificates forcan we begin to uncover their hidden gifts. Eachstudent brings many different gifts to theclassroom, and as teachers we need to encourage their efforts; show them that we are paying attention to their hard work. Itheir strengths by finding ways for them to use thatgift in the classroom. I have a genuine love for children and their curiosity, so my classroom will consist of a sharing IFor me, the highlight of grade school was the hourwe spent each day in our Native Language class. circle where each student will learn to share their thoughts, ask questions and learn to pay attention intently to each others ideas. I call this learning tWe got to hear legends, make bannock, crafts,learn to sing different songs and most of all wewere taught basic words and meanings of our respect. I also want to incorporate the knowledge of our elders into our classrooms. We need to utilize our Elders teachings so we can all learn IOjibwa language. I remember one particular year;our whole Aboriginal student body went on acamping trip. We played games, swam, listen to from them. lf our students are taught to be proud of their culture then perhaps we can lead them in the direction of hope and prosperity. I hope to tstories around the campfire and most of all we gotto eat all the delicious traditional foods. I lookback at that trip and have many wonderful teach my students that they have the ability to overcome and endure lifes challenges as they go out into the world. I can do this by teaching them tmemories. lt made me feel good to know that ourelders and parents made the time to take us onthat trip and made it a fun learning experience. that their culture and way of life is a very important part of who they are. INowadays, our community,,,Iakes all the studentson a geese rally. The eldeteach them how to hunt them out and and cogk the geese. Most of all, I hope to show my students that I can be trusted as their educator and that I care about ITh&{ook forward to tsvery..year. their dreams. Dreams are an important part of d reflect our lives. lf we do not have dreams, then what do we live for? t where lv; a
  13. 13. t $hirleu llleftanalr "You are a very kind person ." ar, "l like the way you stick with things, even when it seems hard to do."t Building Positive Self Esteem You can even praise a child for something he did not do such as "l really liked how you accepted my answer of no and didnt lose your temper."I Back in our reserve in Webequie First Nation, there are about 139 students in our school. I have worked over five years as a tutor escort at my Lastly, I would like to discuss reward programs for the students. There are a lot of ways we asI reserve school. find that therb are always a high number of educators can go about this program. Students really like get[ing rewards. They will do what is expected of them and if they make a wrong choiceI I students that have low self esteem in every school they lose the privilege to get the points or they will year. The most important thing to do in the not be given the points, it all depends what causedt beginning of every September, first day of class is them to lose their points. to build the relationship with individual students. I begin by sharing a story about myself and There is a lot more we can do in the classroom. Using positive self esteem activities will help theI eventually, the class begane to share stories too. From this positive beginning, a trust takes hold and students bring their self esteem up to where they our students can rely on somebody. When they willfeel comfortable to fit with the other studentt have a problem or feel scared to tell anyone about in the classroom. the problem, they can share with a teacher they trust rather than feeling helpless or stay home andI not coming to school. As educators, we can help get to know more about the students. For example, play games, role plays, puppet shows, bring an Elder to talk to them. Another way, wouldT be gatheri n g i nformation th rough conve rsati ons with students, parents and other teachers fromI previous teachers for their weakness, strengths, dislikes, likes and observing students in a variety of situations. Also, observing students approaches toI learning, interactions with other students and how they respond to feed back would be helpful.t Be generous with praise. Use what is called descriptive praise to let the child know when they are doing something well. You must of course ber aware of situations in which the child is doing a good job or displaying a talent. When you observe them showing a talent you might say, "That last , ::,,:tli . , ..i:l-::.ll-i;1l:t: ir: _ria .:rfii,l ..:l jt r:.i,,]5...,i.,-jl*::i:,::,, piece you played was great. You really have a lot of ,, ..-. . : musicaltalent." Dont be afraid to give praise ofte,n, even in front of family or friends. Also, use praise to point out positive character traits. Fsr instahie,,
  14. 14. with the children a childs daily life at school. I am Glara tllissewaoe all day and they have learned to trust me. lt is Building Self EsteemAt the beginning of each school year, my personal important to treat each child as a person first and that each person has feelings. I am always praising any little accomplishment that the child has made whether by attending class that day or by helping I iapproach to creating a meaningful and positive around the classroom or participating in classlearning environment is to establish trust and activities.friendship with the students. First, I each student I alsofind that using the reward or incentiveinto the classroom and set out some get system in the classroom can also hurt thoseacquainted games etc. and take command by children who have learning disabilities such asletting the students know that while they are at speech impediment, lack of language developmentschoolthey are expected to follow rules and or too shy. As a result, these children loseroutines. The rules are simple and easy to followand aim to show respect, compassion and to help confidence and self-esteem. Often, they will mostone another. often just sit back and watch. To address the unique needs of the students, I sometimesBy doing so, my students learn to be respectful and assigning a buddy for support or someone to helpobedient and this creates a meaningful learning him/her build up the courage and build up enoughenvironment. The children can also have some fun. confidence so that they can participate and do what the other students are doing. By adapting aAs an example: Circle Time is part of the routine buddy support, students often overcome their shyness. This builds up their confidence andwe do every morning. At this time, we begin our reciting our daily exercises e.g. Calendar,Weather and Reviewing our day plan. Also at this At the end of each day, I gather the children fortime I ask the children if they have any story or Circle Time to recap and reflect on the day. I willanything to share to encourage dialogue with the ask the children some questions such as: - Whatstudents. At times it is very hard and challengingto have all the students to participate, so I create they remember most for that day and what wasan.honor system and reward those students who learned and what was fun to do and learn andhave parficipated and contributed to in class what was accomplished that day. I also thanked alldisetiffi.,6rq:i$ji a sticker and a novelty eraser. the students for joining us that day, and to remind - . .;,jt+:i? rlAlso, not tcii6,ave out those students who are shy them that "We are allfriends here and that we to contribute to must carry on respecting each other as we leave.9r lhe student3$at.Q{-e ot ready them with a sticker for We have all enjoyed learning and helping each d day and to encourage other today and that we learn together by helping in us 6gain the next day. each otheL and have a fun and safe evening. See you alltomorrow." helps those who confid.ence to This is the model I set out for myself. Each and ifigbnolto every day, is to ask our Creator for guidance and to help me nurture my students that have come to walk on a positive road in their learning journey important in from the beginning, to the end of the school year.
  15. 15. lloreen tllissewaGG Rivers of Education Rivers are connected to Streams, creeks that reach To lakes, ponds and oceans Rivers flow slow, fast, Wide and narrow straight and windy Rivers have shapes in many ways Rock slides, banks high, and low, they split, Brushes, grass and cliffs Rivers have rapids, falls Whirlpools and islands Rivers have many obstacles This poem is about education. We have many opportunities in education. There are sa for our families, friends and home. There are many feelings that appear through your life andwe go through. The obstacles you go through, how time goes slow in the beginning and when theto finish you wonder "boy that was fast?" Thats the way I see myself. Riding in the river where you have through the calm, then slowly travel the rapids and go up and down the waves and see a beautiful lake orisland. Taking the portages to carry your load of supplies and gear, bringing along with you your family to takethis ride with you. As you take the ride, there are precautions of the dangers of rivers. As you go through tle.c5ft t,rgmm river taking the dangers, the hard work, you will be glad that you made it. I always tell my children thats that ry life is: "You will have hard times and all the feelings you will feel." This poem is dedicated to my family supports me, the group of learners, the teachers, friends, and the generations to come.
  16. 16. able to cut fish and moose meat just like my tllaru0l[eesG grandmother. I finally questioned my mother about the way my grandmother taught me. My mother My Learning Life Style said, "That it is the way or custom to teach our children."How did I learn? What is this question reallyasking? ls it asking me how I learned in a school Around the year when I was about eight or ninesetting or is it asking me how did I learn the the reserve #64 was established. They built atraditional way. I am going to answer both ways. school which was called Fort Hope Day School This man came to our settlement and talked to our parents and elders. They were told that we had toTraditional Teaching: attend school every day. Also, we had to move toI was born back in 1962 in a small village called the reserve to qualify for government handoutsNaybeemagang. We had six families in the little They said that we would be getting new houses.settlement. I remember living in a one room cabin. They also said that was the only way the men can get jobs such as carpentry and to go tree plantingThere were eleven of us living there. We had notelevisions or electricity. We were lucky enough to or firefighting. We had to pack up and move. Thathave a six horse motor and a small chestnut boat fall I started my first day of school. I was so scaredwhich was rarely used only for hunting or checking but they told us that they were going to teach usthe fish nets. ln the winter time we used dog sleds things that will help us live better lives My firstto get around. My parents and grandparents teacher was a pretty white lady. She greeted us atstarted teaching us when we were very young. I the door with a smile and said some stuff which Imust have been around five years old when they did not understand. But as soon as the door closedstarted to teach me. I remember my grandmother she changed her attitude. She turned from antelling me to sit by her at the fireplace outside her angelto something else like she had two personalities. When I was told that I was going tohouse. She had just gotten fish from the fish net.She then started to tell me stories and legends. I be taught to learn I assumed that I would just sitreally liked to listen to her story telling time which and watch. Boy, I was wrong after the first day ofwas usually at night, just before we go to bed. I school. I felt bad because I did not understand never got tired of hearing her stories or legends. I what she was saying. You see my first language waswatched her cutting up the fish at the same time Ojibway. lt continued on and we tried so hard to please hen S-he also said that left handers are from listening. She used to do this to me when she gets her fish, I watched and listened to her. She would the devil,gg.Orlr{E.s,,f-orced to write with my right also go with me when she went into the forest to hand. That white .from get moss or berries. When one of the men killed a moose or caribou, the women would come that together and divide the kill equally. My mentally. I learn from- grandmother brought me to this gathering and I a hands on learner.. watch and listened to them talking. I use to wonder when she was going to let me cut up the fish and the meat but I kept silent and kept watching. When I started my own family, I felt nervous because lthought I wouldnt know what to do and my partner expected me to know these things. We went camping for two months on the trap line and everything came back to me. I was ; ::iin
  17. 17. uictofla 0shag Positive Learning "Touch their spirits with the feother of encourogement, whispering: You can, you will, You must, your people need you" Gilliland, Hap.Teaching the Native American 4th edition.Dubuque,lA Kendall/Hunt Publishing Co., 1999 pg. 100 I believe the positive effort from a homeroom teacher determines a successful learning environment. Ouraboriginal students respond in a positive manner to a teacher who motivates, demonstrates caring and helps students in all aspects of their learning. When the students are asked to identify what best describes their favorite teacher. They would use these words: * happy * motivated *honest *funny * understanding *friendly *interesting xdedication. lt is the teachers personality that is the single most important aspect in promoting education success. When a teacher exhibits their traits, the path is smoother. Students are interested and actively participatingin learning. ln every school, there are teachers for whom the students do the work. lt might be the only classfor which they do homework, but do it for that one teacher. The students are not always looking for the easy way out. Frequently, they are unable to do the work due to learning challenges and abilities. Therefore, it is vital that a teacher prepares materials to built up skills and confidence for the student. Some examples for promoting learning in our community are one on one tutoring, using visual materials and oral repetition. The students need to establish a vision for setting goals to complete for completing school. lt is likeestablishing a birth in a childs mind to have a positive encouragement to start a journey towards success. One dt mind set is "l can do it and I will do it". lt is important to have a strong foundation in the choices made in life. ,r.,
  18. 18. from their assignments At the same time I often llaisy SlimeliaGft have manipulatives available for their throughout the course of the daY use Building Self-Esteem The children enjoy listening to stories during story-time. They like to listen to stories that are as anReflecting on my teaching experiences cultural related. I tell stories about my trapping communityAboriginalteacher, teaching in my own i.yr, ..rping, and outdoor experiences And I an honor forof Eabametoong First Nation has been intergrade these stories to solve problems in Mathme. lrngirg., Social Studies and Science subjects A is the children all favJuriL story the children enjoy hearingWhen the classes begin in the fall, the bit ,,ory. I find this story very encouraging to thecome with smiles on their faces and eager to learn " like to valued students who enjoy riding bikes I wouldnew skills. These are the aspects and the share this storY.words I use when I am teaching children Childrencome into my classroom in their own little different can ride a Normally I would start by asking "whopackages, there are special and unique in their ride a bike bike? Or "Who would like to learn to*, example, some children are jolly some day?" then next question "How did you to tackleenihusiastic full of anticipation and ready learn to ride a bike? Once upon a time there was some learning new skills. On the other hand this little girl, she really wanted to learn to ride a children are shy, not so eager, or enthusiastic as yet so she spent bike. But ift" OiO not have a bike the other children. They come into the classroom place because her most of her days at her cousins and sit themselves in the corner cousin had a bike. As the days went on she tried and tried to balance and take off on her own HONOUR NURTURE (H)haPPY patie(N)ce enc(O)urage (U) unique e(N)dure p(R)aise (O)openness (T)tolerance (U) understand was riding on her own! She was so nappV: fr@;$;;; lea(R)n (R) resPect home .nJ totd her father As for a rew€rd acc(E)ptance effort, her father and uncle bought hera followingweek. ,-l ln a brief summary, I feel it is importantlo- The two mottos I use to encourage the students welcome and treat each child eqLlelly have are LOOK, LISTEN, AND LEARN and PRACTICE have praise and respect Theparents irrii*t, in the teacher to pruin" acaderfi MAKES IMPROVEMENTS for,ffi and healthy and safe environment I highly believe children learn best through play children. the hands-on activities, visual and oral Normally posters - set up in my classroom is educational calendar i: alphabet, numbers, colour, shape words of the week Also I - months of the year and days drawings ,Li:*) display the childrens full names and their --.::11;PE
  19. 19. llorman $hewau[iofi We talked about his favourite player Sydney Crosby. So I asked about his stats for the game. He told me "shots with 54 assists", so far he replied. The Learning Place Then I asked him how much that was all together.Hello my name is Crying Wolf, tutor escort for He told me 88. After we meet I went on Google toSimon Jacob Memorial Education Center. I work in find the and the stats for Sidney Crosby,the Special Education Department. all the numbers that he told me were correct.To me the "Learning Place" is where children can At that point I told him that he did not need anexperience learning in a safe encouraging IEP that he knew how to do math. Johnny wasenvironment. I believe that when we are teaching puzzled. I told him when he added the shots andthem to learn, we must approach the child as a the assists he was doing math. Johnny saw that hewhole. did know how to add, it was just a different way to look at it.There have been times when I have witnessedteachers that simply write students off as unable to So the teacher discovered that if she presentedlearn. I knew a teacher who insisted a student the math in a different way for Johnny he wouldneeded IEP (lndividualized Education Program) as understand. Eventually, he learned how to do mathhe could not do math. She requested a meeting questions without having to think of it as hockeywith the parent and requested that I be part of the scores or stats. But the encouragement I gave himprocess. helped him to realize that nothing was impossible.I sat and listened to the teacher talk and I was very A whole child approach is to teach each child that aupset with the way she talked about the childs "l can" attitude will go way farther than someoneabilities. I asked if I could have "Johnny" forthe with the "l cant" The teacher and parent agreed. So I went withJohnny to the Northern store. There I bought a When you a the enthusiastic positive approachmagazine. I asked him if he knew what it was. He towards what you are teaching the students, it istold me, "yes it was a sport magazine." We began easier to engage understanding and at same time,to have a conversation about s[orts. He told me he the child feels safe.loved hockey and his favourite team was thePittsburgh Penguins. A Learning place is where students dont shut down. A Learning place is where a student I mentioned that there was a game that night wants to go to school every day to learn.and he said yes that Pittsburgh was playing Detroit.So I suggested that he watch the game and comeand see me the next day. The next dayJohnnycame to see me and I began to ask him about the _,ffigame.I asked him first who won the game. He told me it ,,j,.; . ji*t.:I.:.was 2 to 1 for Pittsburgh and that they won with a _. -i1shot in the final seconds of the game. ,,1...*i,;ffi
  20. 20. children, parents and grandparents must have felt Bo[e]t, lila[ooso that day. To this day these victims will not talk ln RetrosPect of Learning about or share their experience in attending schools. This has blocked some of people in continuing the education goals My Mother these was I As I begin my second summer of my Aboriginal Honours Bachelor of Education program, I begin to against me leaving to attend high school our.o**unity. How fortunate we now schools in our communities outside have I appreciate the hard work and effort it has taken Aboriginal People to offer a University taitored towards Aboriginals learning lt program of has taken I remind my children how fortunate they are to attend school in our community and to share a I a lot of effort for Aboriginals to challenge Canadian Governments White the Paper of 1969 (a policy to eliminate the lndian Act, and Aboriginals to be placed on equal footing as all Canadian little of my Mothers and my experience of being sent out to school. Once you were sent school, you stayed there until the school out to year to I ended. There was no way of communicating citizens). your love ones and family members There was T iiatl" or. no news from home Today, my children Today I am grateful for the freedom as an Aboriginal student to be able to determine my course of studies I look at my childrens own current still have the privilege of the telephone and better yet the lnternet and instant messaging on internet messengers. I educational needs in my community, and there is a great deal of effort needed to close the 28 year Todays learners have the advantage of technology grpio be in parallel with the Ontario Provincial to help with their studies In my Mothers school standards. schooiing, it was chalk board, pencil and notebook of tn my eaily years it was the same as my mothers New initiatives are guiding us into better ways but there was typewriters and access to books and teaching our own people The current Educational libraries. Today my children enjoy the use of Gap stems from the resistance of former technology in their school They are able to access neildential School students not allowing their a lot of information from the online libraries and children and grandchildren to attend school online database. The future learner will have outside their communities As history has taught greater access to books and materials as entire us, our parents and grandparents were subjected it Iontent of books and material will be available to attend Religious Residentialschools, whereas online. was an attempt to assirnilate orlp,ipfople to , confofrn,to,fu rmqtn,s! earn,::-- ,.,i-t i., ..::::...::..1.,:t:.:.::4,:ilit;r,..: E r; As I refleCt on my past educational experiences my it l;. rtii.r::".;,,t.: .:l::1, :,: Mothers, and my childrens, I wonder what types our people, the Government had future To conform (Roman of teaching methods and delivery does the sanctioned the main Religious groups hold for our Aboriginal People? I have great Catholic and the Church of England)to educate our optimism that New Aboriginal accredited people in their ways. The children were forced to University programs will be developed for our residential school at a young age and were peoples. As time passes, the Canadian the parents and communities:The only Government will again introduce a Policy or Paper They left their Parents, siblings to try to relinquish our Rights, but by then our peoples will be ready to challenge those :, :, Governme.nt Policies.t
  21. 21. Lakehead University Honours Bachelor Education (Aboriginal) PI All rights reserved. No part ofthis book may be reproduced, storedin a retrival system or by any means, without the prior permission of the publisher o6 in the case of photocopying or other reprographic copying. Copyright 2009 by Lakehead University Faculty of Education, Aboriginal Education