Video games as a means to learn about Indigenous cultures and histories

On the Path of the Elders, is a free role-playing video game that offers information on the Mushkegowuk and Anishinaabe Peoples and the signing of Treaty No. Nine. The player can choose between six games, each having particular educational goals. The player must seek the advice of Elders and interact with other characters within the communities to achieve the goals. For each game, there are also teacher’s guides for grades 4-10 that contains the learning outcomes, activities, and suggested reflection and discussion topics.

In addition to the games, the site also has a rich gallery containing video (Elders stories), audio and photo collections, as well as information on the history of the Mushkegowuk and Anishinaabe Peoples.

The article Game on! also addresses the possibilities of using video games as a means for students to learn about traditional knowledge and culture. Students from the department of anthropology and computer science at the University of Victoria, along with researchers, have designed a video game where the player is able to learn about the Coast Salish cultural landscape. As the player “travels” to culturally significant places, the game provides them with information of traditional knowledge through audio, video, maps and photographs.

These are perfect examples of how technology and media can help bridge the gap in education by incorporating Indigenous cultures and knowledges in ways that are engaging, fun and educational.

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