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UCDSB Hosts Multiple Learning Activities During Treaties Recognition Week
UCDSB Hosts Multiple Learning Activities During Treaties Recognition Week
Posted on 11/07/2018

November 7, 2018 (Brockville, ON) – Multiple schools in the Upper Canada District School Board took part in Indigenous education learning opportunities this week in honour of Treaties Recognition Week, which runs from November 4-9.

The goal of Treaties Recognition Week is to promote public education and awareness about treaties and treaty relationships. Treaties are legally binding agreements that set out the rights, responsibilities and relationships of Indigenous people and the federal government. Ontario is covered by 46 treaties and is currently working with Indigenous partners to enhance the provincial education curriculum. Much of the land that UCDSB schools operate on is covered by the Crawford’s Purchases treaty that was signed in 1783.

On Tuesday, Nov. 6, staff and students in the Indigenous Leadership (iLead) program gathered at the North Grenville Municipal Centre in Kemptville for the second iLead Day of the 2018-19 school year. The iLead participants were joined by Patrick Cheechoo, a Cree artist from Constance Lake First Nation. Cheechoo explained how he incorporates Indigenous teachings into his art work such as The Seven Grandfather teachings. Through humour and storytelling, he engaged students in traditional knowledge, including stories about his childhood, family and culture while instructing a group painting session. Each student created their own painting of a loon that they could frame and take home.

On Wednesday, Nov. 7, Chief Donald Maracle from Tyendinaga took time to visit Gananoque Intermediate & Secondary School (GISS) and speak to students about the formation of treaties, the history and importance of them. They explored the Simcoe Deed, or Treaty No. 3 ½, from April 1, 1793, as well as discussed the impact of the treaty relationship today. In total, approximately 180 students in English, Indigenous studies and civics classes had the opportunity to participate in the three separate presentations.

“Students’ eyes were widened in hearing the perspectives of the First Nations peoples about the direct impacts of our treaties, directly from a chief. It was overwhelming for us to hear directly about the oppressiveness,” said Trevor Holme, Acting Principal at GISS. It challenged us to think about what it means to be Canadian and what’s in the true fabric of our history.” 

Danka Brewer, Algonquin Knowledge Keeper visited Brockville Collegiate Institute on November 7 for a presentation and Commitment Strings/Promise Strings activity. Brewer also stopped in at Perth & District Collegiate Institute on October 29. There is one other presentation scheduled for November 16 at Cornwall Collegiate and Vocational School with authour Darren Bonaparte of the Wampum Chronicles.

“I am so glad to see the amount of participation in treaties week,” said Gail Brant-Terry, Principal of Indigenous Education. “It is so important for students to be engaged in learning  experiences that builds their understanding about Indigenous history and pedagogy, and their responsibilities as treaty people”.   

For media inquiries, please contact:

Gail Brant-Terry
K-12 Principal Teaching and Learning
Indigenous Education
Upper Canada District School Board

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