"The Truth About Stories Is, That's All We Are": The Stories We Share In Our Classrooms

Posted by Lori Parkinson on April 9, 2018

This fall, after a suggestion from Jasmine Wong from Facing History and Ourselves, I decided to explore The Truth About Stories: A Native Narrative, by Thomas King with my grade 11 English students. I was familiar with the text but it would be the first time I would be using it in my classroom. When I was in school we were rarely encouraged to be critical thinkers and we certainly were not encouraged to seek out the stories that make up our land. My goal was to learn with my students and explore and make connections. I was going to use the idea of the Oral Story as my jumping off point.

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Topics: Residential Schools, stolen lives, Truth and Reconciliation, English Classroom, English Language Arts, settler educators

Helping Teachers to Be Conscious Allies: Honouring and helping heal Indigenous (and non-Indigenous) students

Posted by Dr. Pamela Rose Toulouse on March 23, 2018

Dr. Pamela Rose Toulouse, associate professor in the Faculty of Education at Laurentian University, 3M National Teaching Excellence Fellow and author of Achieving Indigenous Student Success, and Truth and Reconciliation in Canadian Schools frames the role educators can play as allies to Indigenous (and non-Indigenous) students and shares with us several key resources for how to do so.

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Topics: settler educators, facing history pedagogy, trc, difficult conversations, CHC, HSB, Residential Schools, Treaty, Sacred Circle Teachings, stolen lives, Teaching Strategies

Introducing Indian Horse with the Tracks of My Life Project

Posted by Luke Bramer on February 27, 2018

Students love music so, when I tell my grade 11 College English classes that they are going to be creating CDs as their first project, students get excited. Inspired by Facing History’s approach to teaching about genocide, I started the “Tracks Of My Life Project” to engage students in exploring the concept of identity that is foundational to our first novel, Indian Horse by Richard Wagamese.

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Topics: Residential Schools, trc, Truth and Reconciliation, Indigenous History, English Classroom, Music, Identity, stolen lives

Grappling with Stories of Violence from Canada's Indian Residential Schools: Educator Workshop and Film Screening

Posted by Jasmine Wong on February 5, 2018

 Join us on Sunday February 25th for an educator workshop and special film screening with Director Susan G Enberg and Louis Knapaysweet, an elder and survivor of St. Anne's Residential School.

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Topics: Residential Schools, settler educators, facing history pedagogy, workshop, Survivor Testimony, Film, stolen lives, trc, difficult conversations, CHC

Settler Educators Teaching Indigenous Perspectives and History

Posted by Angela Nardozi on May 29, 2017

My name is Angela Nardozi and I am a guest on Turtle Island (what we now call North America), with both sides of my family originating in Italy. I grew up in Markham, Ontario, where I attended Catholic Elementary and Secondary schools. I am a certified teacher, and have spent time living, working, and researching in a Treaty Three First Nation, and my experiences there have propelled me on the path to learn more about Indigenous perspectives on history and current events, and the history and present of colonization on Turtle Island.

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Topics: Indigenous History, settler educators, stolen lives, Survivor Testimony, Residential Schools, Truth and Reconciliation

Students speak on Canada's dark history, confronting their own biases, and the need for reconciliation

Posted by Audrey Scanlan Hannah Clark Emma Howey on May 15, 2017

By studying the historical development of the Holocaust and other examples of genocide, students make the essential connection between history and the moral choices they confront in their own lives. Erin Ledlow helped the students in her Genocide and Crimes Against Humanity class make these connections, and incite real change in their thinking by creating a safe space for students to explore the difficult history of Canadian Residential Schools using Facing History pedagogy, Stolen Lives, and inviting survivor Geronimo Henry to help students draw these connections, and reflect on themselves.  The following is an excerpt of an interview from three students who were part of the class and this incredible learning process.
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Topics: stolen lives, Residential Schools, facing history pedagogy, Student Voices

Teaching About Residential Schools

Posted by Brenda Ohngemach on October 12, 2016

Introduction: My Residential School unit was largely based on the Residential School Lessons for the Genocide Elective set out by Cheryl Payne. I simply tweaked them a little bit to suit my classes. I taught this unit last year in April. The main areas of change were primarily how I prepared and debriefed the students to see the NFB movie We Were Children. The other change was including a summative assignment based on the questions found in Facing History and Ourselves’ book Stolen Lives. Creating this summative assignment was a great experience in professional collaboration as  all of the history teachers at my school collectively designed it.    

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Topics: CHC, CHG, Residential Schools, Teaching Resources, Teaching Strategies, trc

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This is where Canadian Facing History and Ourselves teachers and community members meet to share reflections, scholarship and teaching practices that will inspire, challenge and improve teaching and student learning. Our stories provide a window into diverse Facing History classrooms in Ontario, and invite you into the discussion.

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