Tag Archives: Picture Books

Stories and Place


Nokum is My Teacher – David Bouchard 

“to watch you learn to see” ~ Nokum’s words to grandson in response to getting an “education”

David Bouchard, a Canadian Metis born and raised in Saskatchewan, is a writer of over 50 books. This particular picture book includes both English and Cree languages and is a dialogue between a boy and his grandmother, or Nokum. Due to its powerful message regarding the intersection of indigenous peoples and western education, this story is a must read for all western educators.

To watch an excellent production of this book through video, click here: Nokum is My Teacher



Inhabit Media

While previewing The Blind Boy and the Loon by Althea Arnaquq-Baril, I was introduced to Inhabit Media as mentioned in the commentary within the book. Inhabit Media is a publishing company purposed in promoting and preserving Inuit voice, story and art through book publications for both children and adults. An extensive book reference page of their published children’s books is a valuable resource for the elementary educator.


Unnikkaat Studios Inc.

Althea Arnaquq-Baril, recognizing the need to preserve the language of her people, built her company, Unnikkaat Studios Inc., to produce Inuktitut documentaries and language productions. As the Inuit are traditionally an oral culture, using a means of oral documentation of stories and history through film making can be an effective and productive way of both preserving the voices of the Inuit and allowing their voices to be shared with others.



Morning on the Lake – Jan Boudreau Waboose

A beautiful depiction of place as told through the words of Jan Boudreau Waboose, a Nishwabe Ojibway from northern Ontario. Place-based references to landscape, animals, sky and environment are seamlessly interwoven throughout the text.


tundra     shoreline

Rebecca Hainnu

Rebecca Hainnu is an elementary school teacher in Nunavut, a curriculum writer, and a picture book author. Particularly, A Walk on the Shoreline and A Walk on the Tundra encompass place-based knowledge. Her newest book extends plant knowledge and is entitled, Walking with Aalasi: An Introduction to Edible and Medicinal Arctic Plants.

Allison’s Cyber Travelling Reflections Part 2

These links are ones I have recently come across that relate to my research project on teaching elementary students about Residential Schools, as well as links that support the teaching of First Nations culture to younger students.

The Owl and the Raven: An Inuit Legend

This Inuit legend tells the story of how raven’s feathers turned black. I like this video because it is using authentic language and is engaging for young audiences. Using stop-motion video techniques allows children to get into the story and learn about a legend and culture through storytelling. Hearing an authentic voice speak the language adds to the experience of this charming story.

Common Portrayals of Aboriginal People


I came across this link in Kimberly Cook’s references in her Discussion #5 post. I chose to include it in my resources because I feel it may be important to incorporate into my research for my final project. Although at this point I intend to focus on the topic of residential schools I think it would be important to also introduce the concept of stereotypes to my students during discussions and how this related to the times when residential schools were prevalent.


YESNet First Nations Programs & Partnerships


This is a link I came across in my other course, ETEC565A. YESNet is the Yukon Education Student Network, and the First Nations section of this website contains numerous K-12 resources that are directly related to First Nations cultures both in the Yukon and the rest of Canada. These resources include curriculum on relationships, attachments, restorative practices, culturally relevant programs, and activities. You can find book lists, games, study guides and templates relating subjects such as science, math, social studies, and the arts.

10 Books About Residential Schools To Read With Your Kids


I included this link because of my love for picture books! Storytelling can be a very powerful way to get across important lessons, thoughts, and feelings. Storytelling is also an integral part of many First Nations cultures so it is fitting to incorporate stories into teachings about Aboriginal cultures and ways of life. This particular list includes authentic stories based on real events of First Nations children going to residential schools. These stories open up a space for conversation on this tough topic. The book list contains age range recommendations and a brief synopsis of each title with a picture of the book, too.

Aboriginal Worldviews and Perspectives in the Classroom


I chose this particular image to represent this resource because these Principles of Learning summarize important foundations at the root of many First Nations cultures. This resource comprises the results of meetings between five districts across BC with urban and rural aboriginal and non-aboriginal participants. This compilation contains photos of activities in classrooms as well as projects, meaningful quotes from educators and participants around the province, as well as sections on:

  • Connectedness and Relationship
  • Awareness of History
  • Local Focus
  • Engagement with the Land, Nature, the Outdoors
  • Emphasis on Identity
  • Community Involvement: Process and Protocols
  • The Power of Story
  • Traditional Teaching
  • Language and Culture
  • Experiential Learning
  • The Role of the Teacher
  • Community Engagement
  • Teacher Preservice Training and Inservice Professional Development
  • A Positive, Learner-Centred Approach

Allison’s Cyber-Travelling Reflection Part 1/4

First Voices – http://www.firstvoices.com


This website is a language archive collection of Indigenous cultures in Canada. By selecting a province, visitors can see the various tribes and in their respective areas around the province. By choosing a specific group, you are then transported to a page with language resources. The page for the area where I live, in southeastern British Columbia home to the Ktunaxa people, contains 2500 words and 1114 phrases archived. The Ktunaxa people have even developed their own language app available in the App store. Along with audio files and an alphabet with sound to hear the language spoken authentically, visitors also have access to an art gallery, games, and community slideshow.

Fatty Legs – http://www.annickpress.com/Fatty-Legs


This website takes you to the publisher site for the novel, Fatty Legs by Christy Jordan-Fenton & Margaret Pokiak-Fenton. This is a true story that tells of 8-year old Margaret’s own journey to a residential school in the Arctic on her quest to learn how to read.

On this site you will find a peak inside the book, a lesson plan to introduce the book, questions to ask during reading related by chapter, and activities for after reading. There is also a Book Talk resource link that ties in with themes that come up through the story, as well as a podcast by the author. This book is recommended to be read to students ages 9-12. Related books by the same authors are When I Was Eight, Not My Girl, and A Stranger At Home.

Rabbit and Bear Paws – http://rabbitandbearpaws.com


This site is home to the popular series “Rabbit and Bear Paws”. The Canadian authors of this series aim to teach children about The Seven Grandfather Teachings (Love – Eagle; Courage – Bear; Respect – Buffalo; Humility – Mouse; Honesty – Sabe; Truth – Turtle; Wisdom – Beaver) through children’s picture books and graphic novels.

The Learning Circle – https://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/eng/1316530132377/1316530184659#un2


This collection of resources is put out by the government to assist elementary teachers in teaching about First Nations’ cultures. It provides sample lesson plans with audio files of Aboriginal stories. These units consist of lessons on storytelling, the seasons, sharing, colours, games, and National Aboriginal Day.

Project of Heart – http://bctf.ca/HiddenHistory/


This project discusses the 150 years of residential schools in BC. The site provides an eBook on the project, as well as a compilation of supporting resources and activities. Originally started in Ontario, Project of Heart has spread across Canada encouraging the education about residential schools. This eBook provides specific information about schools in BC, but also the realities of residential schools all over the country. “Reconciliation is about respect” says Justice Murray Sinclair, Chair of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada.