Category — Uncategorized

Indigenous Portal

The Indigenous Portal is an outcome of the World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS . WSIS was a two-phase series, United Nations (UN) sponsored summit about information and communication. The Geneva Summit in December 2003 laid the foundations with a Declaration of Principles and a plan of action. The Tunis Summit aimed to monitor and evaluate progress on the action plan and devise an agenda that will target goals for achievement by 2015. From these events came the WSIS Declaration and Plan of Action, as well as the Declaration and Plan of Action of the Global Forum of Indigenous Peoples and the Information Society.

Together, these documents provide guidance to states, Indigenous peoples, UN agencies, non-governmental organisations, the private sector and academics interested in using new technologies to improve communications and the quality of life for Indigenous peoples around the world.

October 17, 2009   No Comments

Module 3 Entry #1

This website is the work of a group of people who believe deeply that indigenous peoples have the right to be indigenous people – on their own lands, on their own terms. Members include preeminent indigenous leaders, anthropologists, philanthropists, entrepeneurs and the team is currently led by a human rights lawyer.

The homepage includes powerful images and statistics. There are links to important news items and a sign up for the email newsletter. Other links include publications, programs and what you can do.

This site would be very helpful for any one looking for information around language and cultural  preservation.

October 16, 2009   No Comments

Module 2 Entry #5

Creative Spirits

I came across this site linked to an actual Australian government website. I cruised through quite a bit of it before I actually worked my way back to the homepage. It was only then that I realized that this was a blog created by a non-Aboriginal. The following quote from the author really jumped out at me:

“I present Aboriginal culture in Australia from a different angle. While you can find many texts by white authors I like to involve Aboriginal authors, Aboriginal resources and even Aboriginal people themselves as much as possible.”

I’m quite confident that I would have noticed this statement in the past but after reading chapter four of the textbook and participating in the discussion threads I have to say I take issue with this. I’m curious to hear if others feel the same way.

October 16, 2009   No Comments

Weblog 2 Entry #4

Samson and Delilah an Australian film by Aboriginal director Warwick Thornton. I wanted to link this site as I have heard Thornton interviewed before. This film was nominated for an Academy Award in the Foreign Film category. Although it first appears as a basic trailer site as for any other movie I believe the links included make it worthy of a look. There is an interview where Thornton describes how the movie is based on real life experience and where he urges Australian to practice random acts of kindness.  

`Cinema is performance, that`s how us blackfellas have connected with it. It`s where we come from, with our storytelling. A lot of dreaming stories are about moral stories and news and teaching….that`s the way indigenous filmmakers are thinking.`Warwick Thornton.

October 15, 2009   No Comments

Weblog 2 Entry #3

Blue Corn Comics

I stumbled upon this site when looking for some material for a class which was actually created by Native Americans. This is a jumping off point for several different publications such as Peace Party (A Multicultural graphic novel featuring Native Americans) and  Newspaper Rock ( A blog which describes itself as a place where Native American meets pop culture.

other important links:

Language preservation : Blue Comics offers a service which create comics in any tribal language. I found this particularly interesting as most students (especially boys) seem to be hooked on graphic novels.

Harmful Effects of Stereotyping

Seeking Native Writers

There is also stereotype of the month contest which includes commercials, prime time tv episodes etc. It includes links for educators. Overall I think an excellent site for using with students.

October 15, 2009   No Comments

Weblog 2 Entry #2


I came across this site after listening to a program on CBC Radio One Saskatchewan. They were interviewing Aboriginal film makers and discussing stereotyping of Indigenous People. It was a very interesting interview to say the least and I have tried in vain to find an archive of the interview itself.

In a nutshell the film maker interviewed felt that by having films created by Aboriginals the stereotyping could be alleviated and more accurate portrayals of Aboriginal would find their way into the mainstream film industry. This site celebrates the diversity of Indigenous Peoples around the globe and serves as a place for industry insiders to network and celebrate the vitality and excellence of Indigenous art and culture in comtemporary media

October 15, 2009   No Comments

M1-WS 2: Center for World Indigenous Studies

The first three lines on the website read:

  • Access to indigenous peoples knowledge and ideas
  • Conflict resolution based on mutual consent
  • Protecting the rights of indigenous peoples

The site was established in 1994 and is the non-profit research and education organization’s online presence.  The organization offers education programs as well as internships and fellowships through their Fourth World Institute. Their web site offers access to multiple sources of information about indigenous issues such as online Fourth World Journal, the Fourth World Eye blog (eZine), a Forum for Global Exchange, the Chief George Manuel virtual library, a media center with video and audio media, photo galleries, etc.  The site has a much more modest collection of external links.  As this is an .org web site, donations are solicited.

September 28, 2009   No Comments

Report on Improving Education on Reserves Blog #5

Report Title: Improving Education on Reserves: A First Nations Education Authority
Author: Mechael Mendelson

Published by:
Caledon Institute of Social Policy

This report addresses and questions why no progress has been made on measurable graduation outcomes for youth on reserve since the 1996 Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples. The Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples asked the question: “Why, with so many sincere efforts to change the quality of Aboriginal education, have the overall results been so
disappointing?” [Royal Commission on Aboriginal Peoples 1996].
To quote Mendelson(2008)
Education is the bootstrap which First Nations communities must use to improve their
social and economic conditions. Like all others in Canada, Aboriginal children need to acquire an acceptable education to have a chance of succeeding in the modern economy. An acceptable education is more than high school graduation – a post-secondary diploma or degree, or a trade certificate, is required – but high school graduation is the door through which most students must pass to go on to post-secondary schooling. The most recent Census statistics, backed up by departmental data, show that this door is shut for the majority of students on reserve (pg2).

Although this report addresses the issue of education on reserve, it does so from a higher level systems approach.

September 28, 2009   No Comments

Canadian Council on Learning – Aboriginal Knowledge blog #4

Canadian Council On Learning (CCL)

Redefining how success is measured in Aboriginal Learning

This presents a First Nation Holistic Lifelong Learning Model. The model reveals the link between First Nation lifelong learning and community well-being and can be used as a framework for measuring success in lifelong learning.

The tree depicts the connection between the individual sustainability and sustainability of the earth.
The roots emphasize an interconnectedness of life events;
Just as the tree draws nourishment from the ground, so does the individual learn from the world around them, clan, family, community environment.

The root also represents the inter-whined presence of indigenous and western knowledge which from the tree trunks core learning develops.

At the centre of the tree trunk rings – reviews the learning rings of the individual. Spiritual, emotional, physical and mental through which learning is experienced holistically.

The Aboriginal Knowledge Learning Centre

This page has numerous reports on Aboriginal education.

September 28, 2009   No Comments

Multiliteracies Learning Initiative (Blog 3)

Multiliteracies Learning Initiative

What is the story behind the term multiliteracies? It was first coined by a group of scholars, known as the London Group, in 1996 to address the need to revitalize literacy pedagogy in response to the diversity of literacy and modes of communication in our society – hence multiliteracies (multiple literacy practices). These scholars recognized that the traditional understanding of literacy – written text and speech – were collapsing. Not only does this term reflect the changing environment of literacy and communication technologies, it underscores the transformation of information communication technologies (ICTs) from an adjunct course delivery tool to an integral element of course pedagogies.
Multiliteracies approach recognizes the diversity of cultures and communication in our society. This, I believe, provides an opportunity for an inclusive, and holistic approach to learning. Under the multiliteracies framework the site focuses on: multimodal literacy, critical literacy, creative learning literacy, collective intelligence, and finally reflective risk taking.

The site is early stages of development so it doesn’t have established links and significant publications. This is a site to keep one’s eye on to determine if it in fact develops into a productive and resourceful site. The blog section is active and has some interesting insights.
For example, under the blogs there is a youtube clip
The Full Monteverdi which uses Renaissance vocal music to create a contemporary drama. The film is sung throughout and the only other audio that can be heard is background noise from the setting (a restaurant).


The blogger states that this clip really opened his eyes – learning how powerful music and film could be to convey a message and asking what else could he need his eyes open to see? I thought this is particularly relevant to this course for me as a causian white male trying to grasp a further understanding of the relationship between and amongst Indigeneity, technology and education. As a beneficiary of the dominant culture do I need to have my eyes open to see? In other words, what have I been unable or unwilling to see?

September 28, 2009   No Comments

Aboriginal Post Secondary Completion Rates (M1-4)

Something that comes up time and time again in Aboriginal education are high school and post-secondary completion rates.  It is understandable that completion rates may be lower when First Nations students are enrolled in less traditional and, for lack of a better word, more Western institutions but most Aboriginal youth in Canada attend off-reserve high schools and colleges so the issue is worth investigating.

An article by Tracy King from the University of Toronto takes a critical look at the issue in her article “Fostering Aboriginal Leadership: Increasing Enrolment and Completion Rates in Canadian Post-Secondary Institutions” published in 2008.  The article can be found here with a library link here.

The article does a good job of contrasting Aboriginal vs Western leadership, the role of government and their impact on the educational system for Aboriginal youth in Canada.  Beyond this, the article offers a number of options and strategies to increase completion rates at the post secondary level.  King concludes that the key to improving this scenario is a hollistic approach and a collaborative strategy involving educational leaders and decision-makers at all levels.

September 27, 2009   No Comments

Module 1 Entry #5

Turtle Island News

Celebrating 15 years the Turtle Island News is a 100% First Nations owned newspaper available online.  This newspaper covers  First Nations and Aboriginal issues throughout North America. I believe this to be an important educational resource. Turtle Island News is but one example of First Nations creating their own media network. Mainstream media has vigorously sterotyped aboriginals in print and images. Many of these stereotypes  have lived on despite a general public that should know better. The Turtle Island News is an example of a successful effort of Aboriginal owned and created media.

September 26, 2009   No Comments

Orality and Literacy

Ong, W. (1982) Orality and Literacy:  The technologizing of the Word. Routledge, London and New York.

I highly recommend this resource as it delves deeply into examining the differences between oral and literate based cultures.  The major critiques of the book centre around the literary deterministic tendencies of the book.  The author also states the incredible challenge of examining oral based cultures from the perspective of a literate researcher.  However the strengths of the book centre around providing the educational technologist a perspective on attributes and ways of thinking and remembering of more orally based cultures.  Understanding the differences can support and enhance instruction.

September 26, 2009   No Comments

Language, place based knowledge, morality

It is interesting to note the convergence of themes in these postings and discussion. There is a strong connection between protecting Indigenous lands and reviving languages. The names of plants, animals, and tradtional place based stories are connected to ancient relationships people had with landscapes. The land in this sense is the teacher. Anthropologists Keith Basso and Julie Cruikshank are two notables with regard to pointing out the inextricable connection between language, land, and morality. They show that the stories connected with places on the landscape teach people how to behave toward each other and the environment. This is consistent with what elders often want from education for youth; a way to remind them of their responsibilities and relationships to their homelands. It is remarkable how much diversity is being displayed in these weblogs– yet, they cohere around these integrated themes.

September 22, 2009   No Comments

Research Weblogs for ETEC521: Indigeneity, Technology, and Education


Students in ETEC521 will be keeping a log or journal of websites visited during the course of the term. These postings should identify important research links from the Internet that relate to issues of Indigeneity, Technology and Education, and provide a shared research base of resources that may assist students in the course as well as others beyond the course. We will gather these resources via this co-authored weblog.

Each of your postings will be identified as your own, and as people post to the weblog site, everyone will have an opportunity to see the postings made relating to the websites and resources you are encountering during your research across the modules.


September 2, 2009   No Comments