Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation (M4-3)

This is the website of the British Columbia Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation.  On this website, information about certain aspects of Provincial – Aboriginal relations can be found, such as news releases and photographs of events in B.C.

Important and/or useful links from this site are:

This website would be useful in collecting general information about B.C. Government-First Nations relations, and would be a good starting place for research into this or any related issue.  I came across this site in search of solid information about language policy and indigenous languages in B.C., and I have to say I was disappointed to come up short.  The FPHLCC site, however, provides a great deal of information about languages in B.C.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Terralingua: Unity in Biocultural Diversity (M4-2)

This is the website for Terralingua, an organization devoted to the “integrated protection, maintenance and restoration of the biocultural diversity of life – the world’s invaluable heritage of biological, cultural, and linguistic diversity – through an innovative program of research, education, policy-relevant work, and on-the-ground action” (para. 1).

On the site, you will find links to the organization’s statement of purpose, administration, and history, as well as a listing of the initiatives that they are carrying out.  Terralingua’s work relates to indigenous cultures in that part of their mission is to promote linguistic diversity among humankind—indigenous and non-indigenous alike.  Because indigenous languages and cultures are the ones that are endangered, much focus is placed on these languages.  In addition, one of their focuses is in Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and language loss, and the effects on biodiversity.

This information would be a great starting point for someone looking for information on research initiatives involving indigenous people worldwide.  Though not all updated, the following sections will be of use to the researcher:

  • Activities (Outlines some of the specific projects undertaken by Terralingua)
  • Publications (Articles and print material published by Terralingua)
  • Resources (FAQ’s, Introductory information about biodiversity and TEK)

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Earth Keepers (M4, #3)

Earth Keepers


Earth Keepers One Tribe Trading Company is an organization that manufactures and distributes healing products.  Furthermore, this organization is committed to educating the public about the indigenous relationship with Mother Earth and each other.  This website provides readers and researchers with some valuable information and an introduction to indigenous ways.

Earth Keepers’ homepage links to five sites: 1) Eagle – our philosophy e-learnings, 2) Bear – Programs, Projects and Visions, 3) Horse- Products, Services, 4) Wolf – General info, News and Events, 5) Buffalo – you can help or participate.

Both the Eagle and Horse links lead readers to more links and valuable resources about indigenous life and beliefs. The Bear link shares valuable information on ongoing programs and upcoming projects.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Denendeh: the Dene Nation’s Denendeh Environmental Working Group climate change case study (M4-1)

This article, available on the Encyclopedia of Earth website outlines a study which was carried out by the Dene Nation’s Denendeh Environmental Working Group (DEWG).  The article outlines Dene observations and knowledge about the issue of climate change, as it relates to the people and the land.  The article presents a brief history and background of the Dene Nation, describes the DEWG and its guiding questions:

  • Is there a difference today in Denendeh and is climate change having a role in these changes, what else may be causing it?
  • What climate change programs are there and how can our communities be more involved in research and communication about these changes?
  • If it is important to document Dene climate change views/knowledge, how should we communicate this knowledge with each other and to policymakers, governments, and others outside the north?
  • Is the DEWG a good mechanism to discuss climate change, what should we be talking about, and what else do we need to do?

The article would be a great resource for anyone who is interested in environmental issues and traditional aboriginal knowledge, as the article was written by the DEWG for Dene and other people.  It should be noted that the article is part of a larger body of work in the Encyclopedia of Earth called “The Changing Arctic: Indigenous Perspectives”.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Indigenous Environmental Network (M4, #2)

Indigenous Environmental Network


The Indigenous Environmental Network was created by grassroots indigenous people with common goal of addressing economic and environmental justice. The Networks goals are to: 1)Educate and empower Indigenous Peoples to address and develop strategies for the protection of the environment, health, and all life forms, 2)Re-affirm traditional knowledge and respect of natural laws, 3) Recognize, support, and promote environmentally sound lifestyles, economic livelihoods, and to build healthy sustaining Indigenous communities, 4) Commitment to influence policies that affect Indigenous Peoples on a local, tribal, state, regional, national and international level, 5)Include youth and elders in all levels of work 6)Protect human rights to practice cultural and spiritual beliefs.

This website provides readers and researchers alike with the latest related news and an option to sign up for a monthly newsletter.  Furthermore, on its website, the network provides further information on its programs and initiatives.  These include: 1)Native Energy and Climate Program, 2)Toxics and Environmental Health, 3)Mining, 4)Sustainable Communities, Green Jobs, Green Economies and Global Well-being, 5) Bioethics, Biological Diversity, Forests and Sacred Places, 6) Globalization, 7) Networking and Movement Building, 8 ) International Participation, 9) Youth, 10 ) Water, 11) Protecting Mother Earth Conferences, 12) Spirit Path Memorial.   Most of these project links lead to a page full of related resources such as articles or media or simply a brief description of the provided services.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Native American Cybernetics (M4, #1)

Native American Cybernetics: Indigenous Knowledge Resources in Information Technology


This webpage is accessible through a professor’s homepage.  A professor in the Department of Science and Technology Studies at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Ron Eglash is currently researching many topics including Native American Cybernetics.

On this webpage, Eglash provides a brief description of Native American Cybernetics and follows through with a clarification of the term cybernetics.  According to Eglash, contemporary information technologies are use in Native American knowledge systems and “native communities have become increasingly adept in appropriating computing and communication devices for their own use.”

Examples of such software are linked to: The Virtual Bead Loom, SimShoBan and Yupik Star Navigator.

Furthermore, two publications are made available : SimShoBan wins AAA Education Award and Computation, Complexity and Coding in Native American Knowledge Systems.

Finally, this page provides readers with extra related websites as resources: Navajo code talkers, The American Indian Computer Art Project, NativeTech, Native Seeds/SEARCH and Biopiracy.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

First Nation Information Project (M-4 Post #5)

First Nation Information Project  (M-4 Post #5)

Thsi site provides information about individual First Nations listings as well as links to native businesses, native culture and other First Nations organizations in Canada.



November 30, 2009   No Comments

Assembly of First Nations (M-4 Post #4)

Assembly of First Nations (M-4 Post #4)

A information rich site from the persepective of First Nations people in Canada.  There are too many differnt pages to list but of interest is the section About AFN which has resources on the story of the Assembly of first Nations and the  role that the AFN serves today.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Native Drums (M-4 Post #3)

 Native Drums   (M-4 Post #3)

The Native Drums website is supported by the Canadian Heritage Division of the Federal Government  and contains resources for Scholars, teachers and kids.  There are samples of Native Drumming, myths, stories, videos of Native dance, and interviews with singers and drummers.  What sets this site apart from many others is that at each link the website offers an explanation or provides some context to help understand indigenous culture.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Native Web (M-4 Post #2)

Native Web (M-4 Post #2) 

NativeWeb Mission Statement

NativeWeb is an international, nonprofit, educational organization dedicated to using telecommunications including computer technology and the Internet to share information from and about indigenous nations, peoples, and organizations around the world. There are focusses on communication, research and providing services, resources and support to facilitate indigenous peoples’ use of this technology.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Native Tech (M-4 Post #1)

Native Tech (M-4 Post #1)

NativeTech is an educational web site that covers topics of Native American technology and art with an emphasis on the Eastern Woodlands region. The web site is organized into categories of Beadwork, Birds & Feathers, Clay & Pottery, Leather & Clothes, Metalwork, Plants & Trees, Porcupine Quills, Stonework & Tools, and Weaving & Cordage. You can find information about how these technologies are used as well as how they were developed.   NativeTech attempts to show both change and continuity from pre-contact times to the presen and is dedicated to revising the term ‘primitive’ with respect to peoples’ perceptions of Native American technology and art. Native American technologies are highly ‘evolved’, the product of thousands of years of expertise, oral traditions, change and continuity. There is nothing crude or rudimentary about them, there is nothing self-taught or untutored about them. The technologies are all very difficult technologies to master and require intelligence, practice, skill, patience and teaching to be proficient at them.

This website represents the beginnings of an internet resource for indigenous ‘ethnotechnology’.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

FNMI Framework Alberta (M4-5)

As a teacher with most of his professional experience in Alberta I have little knowledge of how other provinces set up their Aboriginal policies but I do know that Alberta has some extensive resources related to the matter.

Available at this site is very comprehensive and contains numerous policies, documents and curriculum information related to Aboriginal Education.

Here is a collection of the most relevant links:

Some of the highlights of the site include the Did you know section which is very informative across a variety of subject areas.  This section includes census stats, facts and figures related to the following:

The last section that really caught my eye was a new document focused on Promising Practices in FNMI Education – Case Studies.  This document offers a case study of two schools with High First Nations populations and offers as a great snapshot view of the current state of First Nations education in Canada.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

First Nations Information Project (M4-4)

The First Nations Information Project is designed to provide a mechanism to share knowledge, interests, and effective practices connecting the Aboriginal community from around this expanse country and the world.

The site consists of the following main sections:

Some sections are more up to date than others but I found a lot of great information under “First Nations” you will find contact information for many First Nations groups.  The “Native Businesses” section was very interesting as it gives a break down of Native focused businesses by province.  Lastly the “cultures” link puts you in touch with Native Friendship centers and cultural organizations by region.

Overall this site is great for contact and organizational information.  I have never seen such a complete list of organizations, bands and Native companies in one resource before.  It is definitely worth a look if you require this type of information.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

First Nations Success Stories (M4-3)

On the Indian and Northern Affairs Canada website they have a very interesting section devoted to Aboriginal Communities in Canada that are considered success stories.  Here are the communities they have listed:

Each success story contains a case study on the community and most share a video.  Again this is an excellent resource for gaining some insight into Native communities and more importantly successes within these communities.

In my research on First Nations in education I encountered many figures and facts that paint a pretty bleak picture for many Aboriginal youth and communities in Canada but this resource focuses on some of the great strides and pioneering efforts some of these communities are leading.

On of the success stories that really stuck out was the one focused on Eel Lake.  This community has been focused on blending new technology with traditional cultural teachings.  The group has been using technological aids such as smart-boards, videoconferencing and the internet, the Eel Ground First Nation is gaining recognition as one of the most technologically advanced in Canada. Since it first opened its doors the Eel Ground First Nation School has seen attendance triple with their groundbreaking approach to learning.

Hit this link for more information on this project and a video of the community at work.

November 30, 2009   No Comments (M4-2)

I am not sure how we all missed this site but it is another excellent resource.  In module 2 there were some readings related to Aboriginal groups and their use of discussion boards but throughout the course I rarely found “active” discussion boards with frequent, new content. is definitely a site with an active an active First Nations community.  Among their newest topics are concepts concerning:

I have given many of the posts a quick read and they provide an interesting insight into current issues facing first nations people.

The site also offers some great links to other websites, some of which have been previously mentioned here.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Elders Speak (M4-1)

In week 10 out reading about Inuit elders really got me thinking about their role in native communities.  Many cultures embrace their elders as a source of wisdom but I am aware of few groups that elevate them to a status equivalent to first nations groups.

The website shares some great information about Native American Elders, Leaders, Seniors and the demographics behind Native communities.  The website is focused on a cross-cultural look at diversity and aging and I must say there is some great information and insight here.

The site is a joint project between the National Indian and Inuit Community Health Representatives Organization (NIICHRO) and the Canadian Ethnocultural Council (CEC) and is focused on addressing issues for elders in first nations communities.

Here are some of the concepts that the site focuses on and their links:

Check out the site for more information and some insight into issues facing Aboriginal elders.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

News From Indian Country Module 4-5


In an age where information and knowledge is power, it is important to have a website that provides a cross section of reports and information on a wide range of topics.  This web-paper covers a host of topics, though it is primarily focused on the United States.

For example it has an article regarding the US governance model with North American Indians to the latest court challenge against Washington’s NFL team using the name “Redskins”.  In case anyone is interested, the Supreme Court refused to hear the petition.

The menu section is extensive and warrants a perusal.  Topics include, but not limited to Archaeology/Remains to language, movies/films excreta.

There is an interesting story about how the Yaqui people of Northern Mexico were successful in retrieving the remains of their warriors from the New York Museum of Natural History.  I’ve attached the link to the article, but I’ve also copied the following excerpt because it addresses previous practice of an archeologist.

“As if the horror of the massacre weren’t enough, U.S. anthropologist Ales Hrdlicka came upon some of the bodies while they were still decaying, hacked off the heads with a machete and boiled them to remove the flesh for his study of Mexico’s “races.”

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Indigenous Environmental Framework Module 4-4

The purpose and focus of the site is to empower Indigenous people in demanding environmental justice.

In the centre of the page there is a PDF booklet with a cover with caricatures and the word REDD along a fence line. This is an acronym for
Reaping Profits from
Evictions, land grabs
Deforestation and Destruction of biodiversity

The pamphlet title suggest the diplomacy isn’t the course of action, but rather one of action. Indicative of this is the fact that this organization operates without Federal funding. The programs and initiatives are funded through donations from individuals and organizations. Hey, if you were looking to make a charitable tax donation and you are interested in the environment this may be the place to “invest” those dollars.

The website has numerous links to a variety of programs and initiatives: Native Energy & Climate Program, Toxics and Environmental Health, Mining, Sustainable Communities, Green, Jobs, Green Economy and Global Well-Being

For those interest in Indigenous environment concerns, or the environment in general this site is comprehensive in that amount of links and reports it offers.

Clayton Thomas-Muller


November 30, 2009   No Comments

Australian Museum – Indigenous Module 4-3

This site provides a full spectrum of links related to Australian Indigenous peoples. For example it has an introduction of Indigenous Australian history and culture, Aboriginal flags, spirituality and an interesting page on timelines that I will highlight.

A timeline of events relating to Indigenous Australians from the time of Federation in 1901 until 1969

This page is simple in its layout in that is it merely a timeline, however, it provides a small snapshot of the government’s and people overt racism toward Aboriginal people. For example, “The Invalid and Old Age Act provides social security for all Australian – except Aboriginal people”. Similar Acts and polices were denying basic rights to Aboriginal as if they were not people.

For those of us not well versed in the discrimination practices within colonized countries this timeline provides a high level scan of the harsh discriminatory practices as well as the evolution of societal values and government policies. For example, by the 1930s a change was evident in a positive manner. In addition, Aboriginals started to exercise their rights through protests – in 1930s 150 years after European occupation. By the late 1960s policies were emerging that were intended to increase the control for Aboriginal peoples of their lives.

References used to compile timeline:
Bostock, Lester, 1990, The Greater Perspective, Special Broadcasting Service
Fraser, Bryce, (ed) 1983, The Macquarie Book of Events, Weldon,
Directorate of Special Programs, NSW Department of Education, 1982, Aboriginal Australia, a Preliminary Chronology
Jonas, Bill and Langton, Marcia, 1994, The Little Red, Yellow and Black (and Green and Blue and White) Book, AIATSIS
Horton, D (ed) 1994, Encyclopaedia of Aboriginal Australia, Aboriginal Studies Press
Butler, Kevin, Cameron, K & Percival, B., 1995, The Myth of Terra Nullius, Invasion and Resistance -the early years, Board of Studies

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Indigenous People and the Environment Module 4-2

November 30, 2009   No Comments