Purpose of Treaty Ed, Teaching Aboriginal issues, etc.

This week was very informational to say the least, as we continue on our ECS 210 journey some major themes and major topics are coming up and being discussed. The one topic that has been brought up int he last couple weeks have been about the relations between First Nations and Non-First Nations people and the importance of teaching issues that First Nations people have dealt with in the past and are still currently dealing with in the present time as well. We had a guess lecturer this week who shared some great stories and the importance of discussing these issues. Not only did we have a guest lecturer we also were given a resource of Dwayne Donald and one of his lectures who highlighted this issue and the difficulty of teaching these issues or relating material to aboriginal ways of living/world-views.

Dwayne Donald made a really good point that when you sit down an Aboriginal person and non-aboriginal person to discuss these issues they always butt heads, or of they are not butting heads they have two totally different views, which goes to say there are two sides to every story, but unfortunately the non-aboriginal side usually is highlighted and deemed “better” or the “correct info” which is a little ridiculous if you ask me, I believe that both sides should be discussed into detail and then the students can form their own opinions about the matters at hand. We as educators is a touchy topic where there is one clear answer and there is the right answer and the wrong answer when it comes to discussing and forming opinions on these touchy topics, however it is frowned upon if we tell our students this is they way to believe or this is what is right, which can cause problems with parents, so how do we as teachers talk about these topics so that the right opinion shines without forcing our views on our students. This can also stem from Dwayne Donald’s definition of colonialism and denying relationship.

Another question we were asked to discuss was what is the point of/purpose of teaching treaty need when there is little to no first Nations people in the school or class? I feel as though the purpose is to educate students on the history of their country. Canada has belonged to the First Nations people since the start and they have impacted our country in many different ways, they have also faced several hardships due the government of Canada and deserve the respect and empathy they deserve. Another reason to teach treaty ed with few to no First Nation Students is they are treaty people too, the treaties affect the other students as well, we are all treaty people, and that along should be enough to incorporate treaty ed into our classrooms.

Which leads me to the final point of the definition of We are all treaty people, and like I mentioned, the treaties affect non-First Nations as well as First Nations and the impact treaties have had on aboriginal people, there has been a different type of impact to people who are not aboriginal.

In the end the hardships and abuse that First Nation people have suffered through out the years is heartbreaking and deserves to be discussed in our classrooms and incorporated into our school systems as well as curriculum.


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