How it Works: The Toolkit At-A-Glance
The goal of this toolkit is to contribute to the body of resources that aimed to strengthen the field of pre-service teacher education and inclusion of Indigenous voices, students and content within the Canadian educational context.
Step 1: Pre-Workshop Prep
This should be done at least a few weeks in advance of the planned workshop.
This is when the instructor plans out how they will use this toolkit best given
their class's needs. During this time, the instructor should
- Read through the Teacher's Guide
- Contact local Indigenous associations or elders
- Familiarize themselves with the material by reading the Timeline
- Print off the Date and Timeline Cards
- Arrange for the borrowing of school laptops/ tablets if needed
- Book the spaces used for the workshop ( get permission to smudge if necessary)
- Check in with students who need accommodations, and plan for them
- Do some research about the traditional territory you are on. Plan ahead so that you
can follow the appropriate protocols for your land acknowledgement.
- If you are bringing in an elder, plan ahead with your school to give them a warm
welcome, travel arrangements /reimbursement, and a gift or honorarium if appropriate.
- Plan ahead for the potential experiences of any Indigenous participants who may be
in your workshop. Remember that no single Indigenous person can speak for all
Indigenous people, so let them choose how they interact with this sensitive material.
Step 2: Introductions
It is important to ground this workshop in the land and place where it is being held.
- It is vital to acknowledge the land, it's traditional people, and any treaties or territorial agreements (or lack thereof if it is unceded land) that may be relevant to it.
- Ceremony - this will depend entirely on the resources available to you, and any Elders, Indigenous community members or knowledge keepers.
- Introduction of self, via a traditional Talking Circle.
Step 3: Setting Expectations
Establishing a safe space for vulnerable learning about sensitive topics.
- Introduce the Four Agreements:
- Be impeccable with your word.
- Don't take anything personally.
- Don't make assumptions.
- Always do your best.
- Provide resources for using good and shared language
- Pass out sheet of Terms for Indigenous People, explain thoroughly.
Step 4: Timeline as Puzzle
Establish a baseline of participants collective knowledge of Indigenous History.
Engage in cooperative learning, sit with the discomfort in a safe space.
Make peace with the gaps in knowledge.
- Explain activity, and ask them to refrain from using devices for this portion.
- Pass out well-shuffled timeline cards to groups of 3-5
- Remind them that mistakes are okay! Not knowing all the answers is the point.
- After discussing the cards, provide tape or push pins, and have students affix their cards onto the wall close to the date they believe the event occured on.
- Leave this version of the timeline up on the wall for the next stage.
Step 5: Completing the Picture
Putting the Timeline's events into order and context. This is when the participants will best
be prepared to process any gaps in their knowledge, engage in revelations about the material,
and reflect on the reasons why they had gaps in their knowledge. At this point, participants
will have been exposed to these difficult topics, and will have had the chance to process what
they mean as singular events in Canadian History. Putting them in order, and elaborating
further on their significance will allow participants to gain a deeper understanding of the
need for Indigenous history and Indigenous voices in education.
- Print out the Colour-Coded Master Timeline and gather around the physical wall-timeline.
- Starting with 1497, place each timeline on it's correct date, moving them one at a time, and
explaining any relevant details of the event.
- Allow for participants to ask questions and engage in discussion.
- Explain the colour coding of the cards for visual organisation.
- Show students how to use the QR codes, and how to access this website.
- Ask students to research a date they are interested in, or previously didn't know about.
- Share this learning in small groups.
- Debrief with a talking circle.
Step 6: Consolidation
As the workshop winds down, its important to communicate that this should just be the beginning of their foray into Indigenous education! Encourage participants to continue their individual inquiry & research
- Show them how to use this website to find resources for their pedagogy and classrooms.
- Remind them of Media literacy regarding Indigenous education and content, by placing an emphasis on authentic Indigenous voices, and avoiding stereotypes and misconceptions.
- Encourage them to make an action plan for their further learning and commitment to decolonizing their classrooms to make them better for future generations.