Aboriginal Voices in the Curriculum

A guide to teaching aboriginal studies in k-8 classrooms

Elementary, Secondary, Middle


This document assists teachers in integrating First Nations study into the K-8 curriculum on a consistent basis, rather than teaching a single isolated unit on First Nations culture for a short period each year.

This is a comprehensive document prepared for Toronto teachers by a team of writers and reviewers for the Toronto District School Board. 

The purpose of the guide is to 'provide support for teachers as they incorporate the teaching of Native Studies into their classroom programs', though it could be seen as a framework for study of any cultural entity within Canada's population. The guide provides:
  • A framework for authentic interpretation of a culturally-bound lifestyle and philosophy;
  • Detailed information regarding the history and present-day life of First Nations in Ontario and;
  • Lists of resources (e.g. print, photo, electronic, video).
The guide also makes specific reference to Overall and Specific Curriculum Expectations for kindergarten to grade 8, in all subject areas generally, and Social Studies/History, and Language Arts/English most comprehensively.
Although it does not provide any lesson plans, the resource suggests ways to include relevant First Nations information and related activities (e.g. the guide includes some informative charts and maps that could be copied for student use). This resource is more of a teacher resource than a child-ready plan. There is ample evidence of thoughtful, long-term commitment to making this information available.
The document headings are:
I. Introduction: What is "Native Studies"?
II. Curriculum Considerations
III. Identifying and Dealing with Bias
IV. Curriculum Connections
V. Recommended Resources
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General Assessment

Themes Addressed

Relevant Curriculum Units