Curriculum Development

In early 2013, the community came together to discuss what it was that children should learn growing up as Nishnaabeg of Biigtigong. There was acknowledgment for the need of western education in today’s world yet, clear direction that Nishnaabe beliefs in spirit, values and philosophies would not be forgotten or compromised. And so, through the guidance and knowledge of the elders and advice of parents, and teachers, the writing of a new curriculum for Kindergarten to Grade 8 began.

A framework of expectations was built under the following themes:

  • Hunting/Fishing/Trapping/Gathering
  • The Elements (Earth, Water, Fire, Wind)
  • Nationhood/Relationships/Identity
  • The Arts
  • Living Beings
  • Balanced Well Being (Physical and Mental Health)

Each of the themes has an emphasis on the spiritual foundation that includes traditional practices and ceremonies as well as, specific expectations under the areas of knowledge and skill, land connection, and language. Core provincial expectations for Language Arts and Math continue to be followed.

The development of the curriculum continues with hopes that full implementation will begin on or before the fall of 2017.

Land-Based Learning

There is a spiritual connection between the Nishnaabeg people and the land. This relationship has existed since Creation. The land teaches many things, some of which can’t be described using the English language. All life has a dependence on the land and this must be held sacred. It is the belief that Nishnaabe are very much connected to the land and should not view themselves as separate beings. The people are a part of the land and the more they learn about the land, the more they learn about themselves and who they are. As Nishnaabe people there is a responsibility to make sure future generations carry this knowledge.

The students of the community take part in many land-based opportunities and experiences that are enriched through the use of elders and community members who hold the knowledge. These experiences are based on the natural seasons of the earth and include activities such as fishing, hunting, trapping, medicine/berry gathering, planting, and plant/tree identification to name a few. The students are taught key concepts and gain an appreciation for what the land has to offer and its sacredness.

Get Connected

Join the Community on their journey to making this project a reality.