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B.C. First Nations Studies Guide

Secondary

Description

The Teacher's Guide was designed to support teachers using the student resource book, B.C. First Nations Studies. The Guide consists of seventeen chapters but this review is limited to the first three chapters; The Land, Living on the Land, and Sharing the Land and Resources. Each chapter includes a number of teaching strategies and activities, supplemented by video material, maps, research materials and black line masters.

The resource is intended to help students realize the following curriculum goals;

  • increase awareness of the richness and diversity of First Nations and Metis languages and culture.
  • understand that First Nations and Metis people were significant to the development of Canada
  • understand the historical foundations of contemporary issues
  • learn and use the skills of critical thinking

General Assessment

Strengths

The Guide is strong in terms of both content and pedagogy. Teachers are provided with considerable background information and additional reference material as required. Teachers will also welcome the inclusion of black line masters, evaluation rubrics and extension activities. The introductory material is helpful in providing direction to teachers in navigating topics and issues that may be sensitive or controversial 

The pedagogy strikes a good balance in exploiting the advantages of guided learning, case studies, an cooperative leaning while allowing for student initiative. 

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

The resource is designed to help students

. demonstrate the ability to think critically 

. demonstrate skills associated with active citizenship

. demonstrate appropriate research and oral and written presentation skills

Recommendation of how and where to use it

The Guide will support the teaching of selected units in courses related to Native Studies, Native Language and Culture, Geography and Environmental Science courses that include units on resource management.  

Relevant Curriculum Units

The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.

  • Step 1Select a province
  • Alberta
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 10
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Aboriginal Studies 10: Aboriginal Worldviews
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • World Geography 30: World Patterns of Humankind's Use of the Earth
  • British Columbia
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • First Nation Studies 12: Land and Relationships
        • First Nation Studies 12: Skills and Processes
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Comparative Civilization 12: Culture and Values
  • Manitoba
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 9
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Languages and Cultures
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Other Cultures: Connections and Influences
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Specific Aboriginal Culture
    • Grade 10
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Languages and Cultures
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Other Cultures: Connections and Influences
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Specific Aboriginal Culture
    • Grade 11
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Languages and Cultures
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Other Cultures: Connections and Influences
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Specific Aboriginal Culture
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Languages and Cultures
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Other Cultures: Connections and Influences
        • Cultural and Linguistic Diversity: Specific Aboriginal Culture
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Current Topics in First Nations, Métis and Inuit Studies: Image and Identity
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Citizenship and Sustainability:Area of Inquiry: Indigenous Peoples
        • Global Issues
  • New Brunswick
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Native Studies 120: Religion & Spirituality
  • Nova Scotia
  • Ontario
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 10
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Native Studies: Aboriginal Peoples in Canada: Methods of Historical Inquiry
    • Grade 11
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Aboriginal Beliefs,Values, and Aspirations in Contemporary Society (College Prep.) Identity
        • Aboriginal Beliefs,Values, and Aspirations in Contemporary Society (College Prep.) Relationships
        • Current Aboriginal Issues in Canada (Univ./College Prep.) Identity
        • Current Aboriginal Issues in Canada (Univ./College Prep.) Relationships
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Aboriginal Governance: Emerging Directions (Univ./College Pre.) Identity
      • Geography
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • World Geography: Human Patterns & Interactions (Univ. prep) Human-Environment Interactions
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • World Cultures (Univ./College Prep): The Concept of culture
        • World Cultures (Univ./College Prep.): Cultural Expression
  • Saskatchewan
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 10
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Native Studies 10: Community and Kinship: Aboriginal Perspectives
        • Native Studies 10: Identity and Worldviews, Aboriginal Perspectives
    • Grade 11
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • Native Studies 20: Development
  • Yukon Territory
    • Step 2Select a grade level
    • Grade 12
      • Step 3Select a subject
      • Aboriginal Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • First Nation Studies 12: Land and Relationships
      • Social Studies
        • Step 4Relevant matches
        • /Comparative Civilizations: Culture and Values

Themes Addressed

  • Human Rights (2)

    • Cultural Diversity
    • Social Justice
  • Indigenous Knowledge (2)

    • Rituals, Spirituality and Worldviews
    • TEK -- Traditional Ecological Knowledge

Sustainability Education Principles

Principle Rating Explanation
Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Very Good

Students are encouraged to recognize bias and the Guide provides teachers with direction in helping students develop this skill. The Guide also places considerable emphasis on critical thinking and has incorporated the Critical Thinking Consortium model into the teaching strategies by including "Critical Challenges" for each chapter. 

Consideration of Alternative Perspectives:

Satisfactory- absence of bias towards any one point of view

Good- students consider different points of view regarding issues, problems discussed

Very good- based on the consideration of different views, students form opinions and  take an informed position

Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions Very Good

Chapter 1, The Land analyzes the relationship of First Nations people with the natural world and links the traditional settlement pattern to the environment and lifestyle. It further relates the concepts of land and resource ownership to spiritual and other cultural dimensions. Chapter 2, Living on the Land compares traditional First Nations resource use and management. Chapter 3, Sharing the Land and Resources examines the exchange of ideas and materials between First Nations and other people with reference to governance, economics and the environment.

Collectively the three chapters draw lines illustrating the interplay of economic activity, the environment and the social/cultural traditions.

Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:

Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.

  •  Satisfactory: resource supports the examination of  these dimensions
  • Good:  resource explicitly examines the interplay of these dimensions
  • Very Good:  a systems-thinking approach is encouraged to examine these three dimensions
Respects Complexity Very Good

The resource helps students develop a deeper and more sophisticated appreciation of the relationship of First Nations people with the natural world and a recognition of how their identity is linked to their land, their language, and their culture. and how these in turn shape and are shaped by their world view. Students will gain a more accurate, complex, and nuanced understanding of First Nations people that will challenge the stereotypical view often presented by our society.

Respects Complexity:

The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected

Acting on Learning Poor/Not considered

The aim of the Guide is to enhance student understanding of First Nations and thereby challenge the misinformation, the bias and the stereotypes that students may encounter rather than to promote student action, which runs the risks of charges of cultural appropriation.

Acting on Learning:

Learning moves from understanding  issues  to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community,  or for the planet

  •  Satisfactory: action opportunities are included as extensions 
  • Good: action opportunities are core components of the resource
  • Very Good: action opportunities for students are well supported and intended to result in observable, positive change
Values Education Very Good

Students are introduced to the worldview of First Nations people and invited to explore how this worldview shapes their values with respect to the roles people play in their society, the relative importance of the individual and the collective, distinctions with respect to social class and status, the concept of a "work ethic'. and the perception of time. Students can reflect on their own values in these areas and "test" them against those associated with First people.

Values Education:

Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.

Empathy & Respect for Humans Very Good

The Guide proceeds on the assumption that a greater understanding of First Nations culture, their values, their worldview, their customs and the challenges they have and continue to face will foster a corresponding sense of empathy and respect for First Nations people. 

Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).
Personal Affinity with Earth Good

The first three chapters of the Guide focus on the relationship between First Nations people and the natural world and in particular with their concept of land and resource ownership, What emerges is a picture of a people who respect the land and the resources and who have a spiritual connection to the world around them; a connection often reflected in their oral traditions and stories. Students are encouraged to collect natural items (plants, rocks, shells, etc.) from around the school or their homes and to analyze the items to determine what meaning and usefulness they may have had in traditional living on the land.

Personal Affinity with Earth:

Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.  

  •  Satisfactory:   connection is made to the natural world
  • Good:  fosters appreciation/concern for the natural world
  • Very Good:  fosters stewardship though practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors 
Locally-Focused Learning Very Good

The Guide aims to have students achieve the learning outcomes through a focus on local content wherever possible. The resource presents generalized information about important themes relating to the many and diverse cultures throughout British Columbia. Students are expected to apply the knowledge and understanding gained from studying the resource to the First Nations group or groups in whose traditional territory their school stands. 

Locally-Focused Learning:

Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community. 

  •  Satisfactory: learning is made relevant to the lives of the learners
  • Good: learning is made relevant and has a local focus
  • Very Good: learning is made relevant, local and takes place ‘outside’ , in the community 
Past, Present & Future Very Good

The  first three chapters of the Guide has students investigate First Nations people's  traditional and contemporary relationship with the land. Other chapters focus on the historical relations between First Nations and Europeans and the current challenges facing the First Nations people.

Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.

Pedagogical Approaches

Principle Rating Explanation
Open-Ended Instruction Good

Teachers are advised that prior to teaching a controversial topic, they should conduct a self-reflection in which they identify their own perspective and that in presenting any topic certain ground rules be respected in accordance with the following;

. a classroom is not a platform . 

. controversy is best taught through discussion rather than instruction

Students are also asked to maintain reflective journals in which they reflect upon the topic or issue addressed in each chapter.

. discussion should protect divergent views among participants 

. a teacher is responsible for ensuring exploration of the issue so that the discussion promotes understanding and is not merely an exchange of intolerance

Open-Ended Instruction :

Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.

Integrated Learning Very Good

The Guide draws upon a number of resources and includes a variety of activities that require a cross-curricular approach. The use of videos to introduce and explore topics under consideration provides an opportunity to realize outcomes associated with Media Studies. In designing and implementing presentations as required, students may practice outcomes related to the Language Arts curriculum. Geography skills are involved in the various mapping exercises demanded of students and in exploring the link between settlement patterns, the environment and resource use. The exploration of Traditional Ecological Knowledge has relevance for both Science and Environmental Studies. The investigation of traditional gender roles within First Nations people may be linked to certain outcomes in Sociology.

Integrated Learning:

Learning brings together content and skills  from more than one  subject area

  •  Satisfactory: content from a number of different  subject areas is readily identifiable
  • Good:  resource is appropriate for use in more than one subject area
  • Very Good:  the lines between subjects are blurred 
Inquiry Learning Good

The Guide prescribes the learning outcomes and the key concepts for each of the chapters, identifies a number of resources for student investigation and discussion and  provides teachers with related strategies and activities within the framework of guided learning but this does not mean that student autonomy and responsibility is abandoned.  

Inquiry Learning:

Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.   

  •  Satisfactory: Students are provided with questions/problems to solve and some direction on how to arrive at solutions.
  • Good: students, assisted by the teacher clarify the question(s) to ask and the process to follow to arrive at solutions.  Sometimes referred to as Guided Inquiry
  • Very Good:  students generate the questions and assume much of the responsibility for how to solve them.  . Sometimes referred to as self-directed learning.

 

Differentiated Instruction Good

Teaching strategies and activities are varied. Students are asked to view and discuss a number of videos that explore the topics under study, work in small groups to address questions raised, create data banks of local resources, invite and learn from guest speakers, participate in field trips to better understand the role of natural resources in meeting the needs of First nations people, and hold a banquet where the menu is traditional foods.

Differentiated Instruction:

Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.

  •  Satisfactory:  includes a variety of instructional approaches
  • Good: addresses  the needs of visual, auditory &  kinesthetic learners
  • Very Good: also includes strategies for learners with difficulties
Experiential Learning Very Good

Much of the student learning is by doing - making contact with the local First Nation Community, taking advantage of the knowledge of First Nations elders, participating in a guided field study to understand First Nation use of and attitude towards the natural world and organizing banquets to share local foods.  

Experiential Learning:

Authentic learning experiences are provided

  •  Satisfactory: learning is made concrete. Working with real objects,  using real sources of information
  • Good: learning takes place in a real-world context. Simulation, mentorship
  • Very good: learning provides experience beyond the classroom.  Addressing real world issues and problems 
Cooperative Learning Satisfactory

Where appropriate, students work in groups to research and present information related to local geography, gender roles, food traditions and special ceremonies.

Cooperative Learning: Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
  • Satisfactory = students work in groups
  • Good = cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught and practiced
  • Very Good = cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught, practiced and assessed
Assessment & Evaluation Good

It is suggested that students use reflective journals to consolidate their learning as they progress. The journals may serve as an assessment tool against which to check their understanding of and opinions on issues relating to First Nations. Students are also encouraged to undertake writing and illustrating assignments and these along with oral presentations provide teachers for material to judge student understanding. 

Each of the chapters concludes with a Critical Challenge that requires students to illustrate their understanding of the issues addressed in the chapter and a General Assessment Rubric is provided to help teachers evaluate student efforts.

Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.
Peer Teaching Satisfactory

Students are charged with working in groups to research and report on a variety of topics using a variety of presentation techniques.

Peer Teaching: Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.
  • Satisfactory = incidental teaching that arises from cooperative learning, presentations, etc.
  • Good or Very Good = an opportunity is intentionally created to empower students to teach other students/community members. The audience is somehow reliant on the students' teaching (students are not simply ‘presenting')
Case Studies Good

The Guide uses selected NFB titles to have students investigate the Kwakwak'awakw and other people in order to introduce and discuss general observations about the First Nations relationship with the land and traditional cultural practices and beliefs.

Case Studies:

Relevant case studies are included.  Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore  concepts in an authentic context.

Locus of Control Good

While the structure of the Guide is based on guided inquiry. there are a number of opportunities for students to pursue  topics that are of particular interest -selecting a specific example of traditional technology to research in depth, building models or displays, researching and reporting on plant and animal resources in the local area. 

Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.