This past December I had the opportunity to attend an implementation training day organized by the Ontario Ministry of Education to learn about the revised Social Studies, History & Canadian History curriculum. It was exciting to hear about the process through which the curriculum was re-written, as it sounded like a true collaboration between Indigenous and non-Indigenous authors and educators.
What I am taking from the pre-publication document is that examples and prompts regarding First Nation. Métis, and Inuit will now be an integral part of the expectations. I also appreciate how they include context, dates, names, and events local to Ontario, in addition to content regarding the wider Canadian content. Actually I was super excited to see that the document contained so much new information about events in this province that I had not yet previously encountered in my reading!
Two things stood out to me at the implementation day:
- There was a large emphasis on a key strategy we have been discussing on this blog: the importance of teachers situating themselves as learners alongside their students while engaging with these topics, histories, and current events. To that end, the focus of the activities that were shared were inquiry-based with an emphasis on photo and video provocations.
- We (and I include myself in this) need to ensure that the Métis and Inuit are not left out of our learning and teaching as educators. On a personal note, much of my work has been alongside First Nations communities, and so I am so much more familiar with First Nation issues, the history of particular Nations, etc. My own knowledge (and subsequently the information on this blog) is lacking when it comes to Métis and Inuit topics and communities, and I am going to continue to think about why this is and how I can learn and share more in the coming months.
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