Category: Indigenization

Joseph Naytowhow Returning as Emerging Elder-in-Residence

Joseph Naytowhow speaking to students.

We are excited to welcome Joseph Naytowhow back to campus as our emerging Elder-in-Residence.

There will be a

Welcoming Ceremony
Wednesday, September 16
Teaching Preparation Centre (Ed 228)
Faculty of Education

Joseph will begin his residency on Monday, October 5th and will remain until the first week of December.

Joseph Naytowhow is a gifted Plains/Woodland Cree (Nēhiyaw) singer/songwriter, storyteller and voice, stage and film actor from the Sturgeon Lake First Nation Band in Saskatchewan. He is renowned for his unique style of Cree/English storytelling, combined with original hybrid and traditional First Nations drum, flute and rattle songs. He was our emerging Elder-in-Residence and his contributions were greatly appreciated by students, staff and faculty. read more…

Last winter, education student Meagan Dobson shared her experience with Joseph in the latest issue of Education News:

“As Joseph [shared] his personal narrative and pedagogy, I felt strong emotions welling up from within myself—I was honoured to receive this knowledge and greatly appreciated his courage to share his experience. Joseph speaks of his experiences with such eloquence and forgiveness.”

New Mural Brightens Up a Corner of the Campus

By Costa Maragos (Reposted from U of R Feature Stories)

Each time Keith Adolph looks out of his office, he sees a work of art that brightens his day.

It’s a new mural that graces a wall at the Teaching Preparation Centre, a library and work space for education students located on the second floor of the education Building.

“It’s great. It draws me in and invites me to look at it longer,” says Adolph who is the Centre’s coordinator. “It feels like I’ve helped make this space a little more organic. It feels more like a learning space and a place for people to be in.”

The mural, called Spiritual Journey, is the work of Cliff Dubois, an artist from the Pasqua First Nation. Central to the theme are four buffalo, walking on sage, shown to signify various stages of life.

“The buffalo that are walking begin in the physical form and slowly fade, eventually making the journey to the spirit world,” says Dubois whose spiritual name is Strong Wind and is indicated by his trademark tiny tornado sketch in the lower right corner of his works. “At the end of the buffalo is a smudge with smouldering smoke that crosses the sky which represents the universe. The smudge offers purification for the soul.”

The mural became a reality thanks to the enthusiastic support of the Faculty of Education and other members of the campus community. The project was funded by the U of R’s Indigenous Advisory Circle.

Dr. Shauneen Pete, Executive Lead on Indigenization, recommended funding for the project.

“For me this project is very much in support of the Strategic Plan. Indigenizing spaces is about changing the physical spaces and by adding the signage and images,” says Dr. Pete. “This is a good way of realigning Indigenous imagery and making them prominent and normal. I can’t wait to see how our students respond to this image and the discussions it will provoke. I’m really happy with it.”

From the beginning, Adolph envisioned a mural with a First Nations theme.

“We’re on Treaty 4 land and with the Indigenization movement we see on campus, I want to be a part of that,” says Adolph. “I want the students coming into this space to feel they’re being represented.”

The mural is located in Room 228 of the Education Building. Adolph encourages you to drop by for a look.

The Faculty of Education prides itself on being one of the best in Canada and offers exciting opportunities. Please visit us here for more information.

Mural by Artist Cliff Dubois in Teaching Preparation Centre

Artist Cliff Dubois with his mural “Spiritual Journey” in the background. Photo credit: Shuana Niessen

Make sure you stop by to see the newly painted mural entitled “Spiritual Journey” by Artist Cliff Dubois in the Teaching Preparation Centre (Ed 228). This new artwork is the result of Keith Adolph’s (Teaching Preparation Centre Coordinator) successful application for an Indigenization grant from the Indigenization Advisory Circle (IAC). Stay tuned for a story to be featured on the University of Regina Front Page. Keith will be posting an artist biography plaque on the wall as well.

Artist Cliff Dubois with Teaching Preparation Centre Coordinator, Keith Adolph. Photo credit: Shuana Niessen

SUNTEP Students Indigenizing Curriculum: Moving Beyond Beads, Bannock, and Buckskin

The Saskatchewan Curriculum is packed with many opportunities to authentically integrate purposeful First Nations, Métis, and Inuit content and perspectives. On February 19 and 20, three 2nd-year students and one faculty from Saskatchewan Urban Native Teacher Education Program (SUNTEP–Regina) had the opportunity to attend and present at the 2015 WestCAST conference in Saskatoon.

Often as teachers, we are uncomfortable or unaware of how to integrate First Nations, Métis, and Inuit content beyond the stereotypical and historical topics. As much as the intentions are good, sometimes we further build stereotypes unknowingly.

Throughout the workshop, we provided hands-on opportunity for participants to work with their outcomes, and in small, common-graded groups to indigenize each subject.

As preservice teachers, each facilitator had examined the Kindergarten to Grade 8 cross curricular outcomes. We indigenized outcomes by going beyond the stereotypical beads, bannock, and buckskin.

The workshop was done collaboratively with the participants as we guided and helped provide the tools to reduce racism and bring awareness to others in the education field. Each participant walked away with indigenized cross curricular outcomes and the ability to introduce indigenization as a professional development opportunity for their workplaces.

The WestCAST theme was “Engage. Empower. Inspire.” Accordingly, during this time, we worked together to build a strong, purposeful, indigenized curriculum.

By Jennifer Reid-Vandevord, SUNTEP Faculty

Education Professor Among Award Recipients Recognized for Leadership in Global & Indigenous Education

Dr. Shauneen Pete, Global Citizen Awards profile

Dr. Shauneen Pete, an associate professor in the Faculty of Education at the University of Regina, who also serves as the executive lead on Indigenization, was recognized (along with David Wessel, Wilma Bell-Wessel) for her dedication and leadership in global and Indigenous education at the Saskatchewan Council for International Cooperation (SCIC) Global Citizen Awards, February 3.

“At first I was surprised to have been nominated for the award and as I found out more about it, and about the organization, I was very honoured,” says Dr. Pete. “The selection committee asked some very interesting questions, which made me think about what it means to be a global citizen and for me it goes back to the teachings of the elders and our responsibility to respect and care for each other, not just in our immediate family, but in the larger community and globally.”

For the whole story visit: U of R Front Page

The Witness Blanket

The Witness Blanket installation is now at the University of Regina campus (January and February). Instructors are invited to include topics of residential schooling in this winter’s courses. Please bring your students to view the display on the main floor of the RIC Atrium (between College West and the Laboratory Building).

The Witness Blanket is recognized as a national monument that highlights the atrocities of the Indian residential school era. The installation honours the children’s’ lives and their legacies that were lost and untold within history. This profound installation has 887 pieces of artifacts that have been reclaimed from various abandoned residential schools, government buildings, churches, band offices, treatment centres, universities and ceremonial objects from across Canada. The artist, Carey Newman, states, “To bear witness is to show by your existence that something is true”. As a witness, you have the opportunity to become a part of the untold stories and to take part in reshaping the history of the Residential School Era.

The installation is unsupervised and stands alone on the first floor of the Research and Innovation Centre (RIC). For further information about the project and artist, please see the following links below:

To create a foundation of knowledge for the residential school era, a suggested resource is the movie “We Were Children,” which gives first-hand account of personal experiences survivors endured while attending residential schools. Another resource is an episode of 8Th Fire called “Sacred Heart Residential School,” depicting the personal impacts of the disconnection children experienced from their communities and the hardships faced while in residential school. To view these videos and for further information, please see the following websites:

We Were Children by Tim Wolochatiuk, National Film Board of Canada

To further the opportunity for learning and discussion about the experiences of the residential school era, I invite you to have an open discussion about student perceptions and reactions to the installation. Here are some questions for debriefing:

  • What knowledge did you have prior to viewing the Witness Blanket?
  • What did you learn from the installation?
  • What resonated with you the most?
  • How do you plan on facilitating the conversation about residential schools and the experiences of the children that attended?