Mathematical Landscapes for Reconciliation

Mathematical Landscapes for Reconciliation – this year’s theme of the 7th Aboriginal Mathematics K-12 Symposium – drew more than 140 educators, community members, teacher candidates and researchers for a full day of exploring mathematics, community and culture. Participants from across the province including Haida Gwaii, Fraser Lake, Prince George, Whitehorse, Fort St. John, Vernon, Kamloops, Kelowna, Osoyoos, Powell River, Port Hardy, Nanaimo and the Lower Mainland met May 11 at the Sty-Wet-Tan Hall in the First Nations Longhouse University of British Columbia to share and discuss strategies for improving Aboriginal/Indigenous mathematics education.

Tsawaysia Spukwus Alice Guss and Spelexilh Ajeanette Dawson of the Squamish Nation opened the morning with a drumming song that involved participants in welcoming and recognizing both human and non-human beings from land, air and sea. This drumming and Dr. Jo-ann Archibald’s story-telling prepared all of us to engage in the day’s activities. Reconciliation activities involved opportunities for participants to increase awareness and knowledge of Aboriginal people in Canadian and BC history. Presentations focused on listening to the land and Indigenous perspectives on the importance of relationships between human, non-human and more-than human worlds prepared participants for learning about cedar and it’s use by coastal First Nations. After exploring mathematical patterns of weaving, Tsawaysia Spukwus Alice Guss led participants in weaving their own small cedar mats while discussing possibilities and implications for classrooms.

This year eight participants shared their projects during the informal sharing part of the program. Barb Wagner of Fort St. John, David Sufrin of Vancouver Island University, Freddy Luneta of University of Johannesburg South Africa on sabbatical at UBC, Junita Coltman of the First Nations Education Steering Committee, and Kirsten Urdahl-Serr of Maple Ridge participated in the Igniting the Sparkle Sharing by offering short presentations of their projects on Indigenous mathematics education with school students and teacher candidates. Misty Paterson of West Vancouver, Sally Hart of Duncan, and Chelsea Bitgood of Kelowna engaged participants through table displays of their projects. A range of ideas and strategies were presented and for many was reported as the highlight of the day.

Overall participants described the 7th Aboriginal Mathematics K-12 Symposium as “thrilling”, “outstanding” and “inspiring.” We look forward to next year’s event.

 

 

 

Success of the Symposium was made possible with the help of 15 volunteers including faculty, teacher education students and graduate students and with support from our sponsors: The First Nations House of Learning, UBC’s Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, Indigenous Education Institute of Canada, Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences, UBC’s Indigenous Teacher Education Program, and The Actuarial Foundation of Canada.

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7th Aboriginal Math Symposium

 Mathematical Landscapes for Reconciliation

Thursday May 11, 2017

First Nations Longhouse

1985 West Mall UBC

8:30 am – 3:00 pm

Registration Now Open [go here]

Click here: for Math Symposium Poster

Please join us for the 7th Aboriginal Math K-12 Symposium at the First Nations Longhouse, UBC on May 11 2017.

This symposium is an opportunity for teachers, administrators, Ministry representatives, community members, and academics to connect, explore, imagine and share new ideas, resources and research on Aboriginal mathematics education from kindergarten to Grade 12. Together we hope to:

  • Learn about new research in mathematics and Aboriginal education
  • Discuss and share approaches, research and educational projects for improving Aboriginal math education
  • Develop community connections to facilitate and support improving Aboriginal math education

This year Squamish Weaver Tsawaysia Spukwus Alice Guss will join us to explore pedagogies of land, cedar, weaving, and patterning.

Please direct questions about the symposium to:

Kwesi Yaro kwesi.yaro@alumni.ubc.ca
Registration closes May 7, 2017.

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Inside Perspectives: 6th AMS – Inspiring

INSPIRING/INSPIRED! Was the most frequent word used by over 170 participants to describe their take-away from the 6th Aboriginal Math Symposium (AMS). The event, held at the First Nations House of Learning UBC on May 12, 2016 drew  participants from across British Columbia.

Wordle Screenshot 2016-05-15 20.24.03

Wordle created from 2016 AMS participant one-word take-away

I recall our first AMS with lead organizer Dr. Jo-ann Archibald. About 20 of us – district administrators, teachers, academics and community members from across the province – sitting around one table discussing the challenges and possibilities of improving mathematics education  for Aboriginal learners. Six years later our Symposium has grown to fill the First Nations Longhouse.

This year’s event was grounded in the work of practicing elementary and secondary teachers. It was affirming to see teachers experimenting with ideas adapted from previous Symposiums and developing confidence in sharing these with others. Each presentation modeled ways of bringing Aboriginal Resource teachers, classroom teachers, administrators and community members together. Each presentation also offered different starting places for integrating Aboriginal perspectives. Secondary math teacher Lori Bernard of Burnaby along with District Aboriginal Resource Teacher, Karla Gamble, began with the curriculum and sought ways to incorporate Aboriginal education with specific learning outcomes. While beginning teacher Katrina Melan of Kamloops in collaboration with First Nation Education Worker Don Bowser began with Secwepemc drum-making, keeping an eye, ear, and heart for moments that offered opportunities for mathematical inquiry.

Presenter Carolyn Roberts of Langley School District asked her District colleagues for their questions in bringing Aboriginal and mathematics education together. They responded:

  • How can I find the “Learning Spirit” of Aboriginal students?
  • How can I incorporate Aboriginal values of “sense of place” in teaching math?
  • How can Aboriginal education’s participatory nature be used to support all students in a typical classroom?
  • How do I as a non-Aboriginal person authentically teach Aboriginal ways of knowing to Aboriginal children?
  • Where do I go as a non-Aboriginal teacher to find authentic, politically correct material to teach?

These are excellent questions posed to further the discussion. We asked participants for feedback on how to improve the Symposium for next year and many suggested more time for more in-depth discussion. Some suggested break-out groups for those interested in primary and secondary education. Good suggestions that we’ll consider for our 7th AMS next year. Hope to see you then.

IMG_0074 copy

 

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6th Aboriginal Math Symposium

Indigenous Education, Mathematics Education

and the Curriculum

Thursday May 12 8:45 – 3:00

First Nations Longhouse 1985 West Mall UBC Vancouver

Online Registration: Here

Program details: Here

Please join us for this year’s Aboriginal Math Symposium. This year’s theme is Indigenous Education, Mathematics Education and the Curriculum.

Agenda: 8:45 am – 3:00 pm

8:30 – 9:00 am       Pick up registration material. Coffee/Tea available. Meet & Greet.

9:00 – 9:15 am       Welcoming Remarks and Story

9:15 – 9:45 am       Math Activity with Shawn Desaulniers

9:45 – 10:45 am     Weaving Aboriginal Ways of Knowing and Ethnomathematics with Carolyn Roberts (20 minute presentation followed by 20-30 min discussion)

10:45 – 11:00 am     Refreshment Break

11:00 – 12:00 am     When Math Meets Weaving with Karla Gamble, Matthew Houghland, Daryl Goeson and Maria Nicolidakis
(20 minute presentation followed by 20-30 min discussion)

12:00 – 12:45 pm.    Lunch is provided

12:45 – 1:45 pm     Doing Mathematics While Building Community with Lori Bernard (20 minute presentation followed by 20-30 min discussion)

1:45 – 2:45 pm     Math and Drum Making with Don Bowser, Katrina Melan, and Rob Wielgoz (20 minute presentation followed by 20-30 min discussion)

2:45 – 3:00 pm     Wrap-up Discussion, Door Prizes.

The symposium is an opportunity for teachers, administrators, Ministry representatives, community members, and academics to connect, explore, imagine and share new ideas, resources and research on Aboriginal mathematics education from kindergarten to Grade 12. Together we hope to:

  • Learn about new research in mathematics and Aboriginal education
  • Discuss and share approaches, research and educational projects for improving Aboriginal math education
  • Develop community connections to facilitate and support improving Aboriginal math education

For further information or if you have questions please contact our Aboriginal Math Symposium Graduate Assistant Kwesi Yaro at kwesi.yaro@alumni.ubc.ca

circlelogo-03UBC LogoNITEP logoActuarial FoundationFNHL_600dpi

 

 

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Aboriginal Math Symposium Feb 27 2015:

Mathematics, Students and Community

February 27, 2015, 9:00 am – 3:00 pm.

UBC First Nations Longhouse (1985 West Mall)

To REGISTER Click Here

PROGRAM Click Here

Please join us for the 5th Aboriginal Math K-12 Symposium at the First Nations Longhouse, UBC on February 27, 2015. This symposium is an opportunity for teachers, administrators, Ministry representatives, community members, and academics to connect, explore, imagine and share new ideas, resources and research on Aboriginal mathematics education from kindergarten to Grade 12. Together we hope to:

  • Learn about new research in mathematics and Aboriginal education
  • Discuss and share approaches, research and educational projects for improving Aboriginal math education
  • Develop community connections to facilitate and support improving Aboriginal math education

Program Description

During the day we will work on activities that involve the connections of mathematics, students, and community. Participants will have opportunities to do mathematics, explore cultural connections, network with others, share stories, and discuss and share their research and teaching strategies with each other.

Agenda: 8:45 am – 3:00 pm

8:45 – 9:00 am       Pick up registration material. Coffee/Tea available. Meet & Greet.

9:00 – 9:35 am       Welcoming Remarks and Story

Coming Together with Mathematics; Getting to Know Your Neighbours

9:35 – 10:10 am     Story, Drawing, and Mathematics with Haida Artist Billy Yovanovich, Haida Gwaii

10:10 – 11:25 am     Bringing Math to the Community; Doing Math with the Community

10:45 – 11:15 am     Refreshment Break

11:25 – 12:20 am     Informal Sharing (participants sharing ideas and projects – 10 min each)

12:20 – 1:00 pm.     Lunch is provided

1:00 – 1:45 pm      Informal Sharing Projects (participants sharing ideas and projects – 10 min each)

1:45 – 2:15 pm      Story, Community and Math with Raven Brings the Light

2:15 – 2:45pm       A Conversation with Niakapamux Artist Andrew Dexel Enpaauk.

2:45 – 3:15 pm      Wrap-up Discussion, Door Prizes.

 

For questions, please contact: indigenous.education@ubc.ca

Registration closes February 24, 2015. Registration fees: $25

 

 

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4th Aboriginal Math Symposium: Mathematics, Weaving, Storywork and Drawing

The 4th Aboriginal Math Symposium was held Friday March 7, 2014 at the UBC First Nations Longhouse with over 180 people attending from across the province. This year’s theme of Mathematics, Weaving, Storywork and Drawing drew participants including educators, faculty members, administrators, students and community members from Port Hardy, Haida Gwaii, Kamloops, Lillooet, Sooke, Victoria, Chilliwack and the Lower Mainland and universities including University of the Fraser Valley, Vancouver Island University, Vancouver Community College, Douglas College, University of Victoria and UBC together to explore, share and imagine new possibilities for improving mathematics education for Aboriginal learners.

Participants investigated patterns through permutations with Dr. Shawn Desauliners, designed and wove their own wool quarter bags with Squamish Nation wool weaver Anjeanette Dawson, and explored proportion and patterns in First Nations West Coast art with Haida artist Billy Yovanovich.

This very successful event was organized by Cynthia Nicol, Jo-ann Archibald and Melania Alvarez of UBC with support from the Indigenous Education Institute of Canada, Pacific Institute for the Mathematical Sciences (PIMS), the UBC Indigenous Teacher Education Program (NITEP), Department of Curriculum and Pedagogy, and Actuarial Foundation of Canada.

Weaving a Quarter Bag

 

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Math Adventure Problems: Bentwood Boxes

Bentwood box resting in the Loo Taas canoe. Design by Billy Yovanovich Jr.

Here’s a problem to try with your students

Bentwood boxes were often used to carry materials during canoe trips. The boxes can be made in many different sizes and shapes and are made from one solid plank (i.e.: the plank is not cut into pieces). The plank is steamed so that the wood can bend to make a corner.

Draw three different possible bentwood boxes that could each hold 24 litres of berries and label the dimensions of each box. What is the length of the wood plank used to make each of these boxes?

Consider a 36 unit long plank. What different sized boxes (without lids) could you design using the entire length of this plank? Now consider the box that could hold the most berries possible. What would be the dimensions of the largest bentwood box that you could design from this plank? How do you know that this box is the largest of these designs?

(Bentwood boxes)

Adapted from Tluuwaay Waadluxan Mathematical Adventures

Please post student responses, your thoughts or reflections to the activity.
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PIMS Public Lecture at UBC: Mathematics and Indigenous Knowledge

You are invited to a free PIMS public lecture (Ron Eglash flyer):

Looking at Indigenous Knowledge in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) education.

Who: Ron Eglash Professor, Department of Science and Technology Studies, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute
When: Friday March 8th
Where: Earth Science Building Room 2012, located at 2207 Main Mall.

Refreshments : 4:00 PM
Lecture: 4:30

Abstract
Indigenous Knowledge in STEM education: Computing with culture From fractals in African architecture to algorithms in First Nations beadwork, simulations of indigenous designs reveal complex concepts and practices that can be mapped onto analogous principles in math, science and computing. Applications for this work include outreach to K-12 students as well as contributions to sustainable development.

In order to be able to provide enough refreshments, please RSVP at melania@pims.math.ca by March 7

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Aboriginal Math K-12 Symposium: Sharing Approaches for Improving Aboriginal Mathematics Education

February 8, 2013, UBC First Nations Longhouse (1985 West Mall), 9:00 am – 3:00 pm.

 Purpose:

The 3rd Aboriginal Math K-12 Symposium is an opportunity for teachers, administrators, ministry representatives, community members, and academics to connect, explore, imagine and share new ideas, resources and research on Aboriginal mathematics education from kindergarten to Grade 12.

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