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 http://www.niichro.com/Elders/Elders7.html 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

Link: IndianCountryNews.com

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

Australian Indigenous Health InfoNet – Module 4-1

The purpose of the website is to contribute to the objective of closing the health gap between Indigenous and other Australians.

The website has a range of topics: Health facts, Chronic conditions, Infectious conditions, Population groups and Health systems to mention a few.  It  informs practice and policy in Indingenous health by making research and health information readily available it has a bibliographic data base to search for a full range of health publications on Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health.

This website is comprehensive.  It has over 3800 pages of information.

Interesting point, it uses the Gecko as its logo because it can be found throughout Australia so it was deemed an appropriate symbol/logo for this site.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Module 4 – Weblog Entry #1 – Bruce Spencer

I selected the Gwich’in Social and Cultural Institute as my first entry because of its significance to my research on the Gwich’in people. Their language is listed as one of eighty-eight dying languages in Canada. My research paper takes a look at the history of the language and what has been done to try to preserve and maintain the language during the past sixty years.


Also of interest are:
Gwich’in Language Wikipedia taken from Answers.com
• The Gwich’in Settlement Area taken from the GDC website
• Information of the Gwich’in Land Claim taken from the GNWT’s Aboriginal Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations website.

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Module 4 – Weblog Entry #2 – Bruce Spencer

Wellness is an issue for everyone and the Gwich’in people are no different in this respect. There have been a number of attempts made to address the needs of the Gwich’in people. The most recent one was in April, 2008 when the Gwich’in Tribal Council made an announcement about the opening of a Gwich’in wellness camp outside of Inuvik, NWT.


Other sites of interest are:
Tl’oondih Healing Society located near Fort McPherson, NWT.
Tetlit Gwich’in Council in Fort McPherson

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Module 4 – Weblog Entry #3 – Bruce Spencer

Keeping with the theme of languages in danger of extinction, I thought it might be nice to send you to the FirstVoices website.


• “FirstVoices is a group of web-based tools and services designed to support Aboriginal people engaged in language archiving, language teaching & culture revitalization. More… or Try our Quick Start Guide “ (taken from the FirstVoices Website)

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Module 4 – Weblog Entry #4 – Bruce Spencer

I came across this weblog (Shaw.ca) while I was researching information for my assignment on the Gwich’in Language. It’s being touted as a cooperative Canadian weblog on things legal. Of special interest to me was the article by Simon Fodden (The Friday Fillip) on dying languages of which there are 88 in our country alone.


Also of interest is:
• UNESCO’s Interactive Atlas of the World’s Languages in Danger

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Module 4 – Weblog Entry #5 – Bruce Spencer

Censored News is another weblog site that may be of interest to you. I discovered it while researching my paper on the Gwich’in people. This blog site has been active since 2007. It reports primarily on indigenous issues and human rights issues. This is a searchable weblog.


Articles are listed by year and month. Scroll downwards and look to the left of the window.

Other links of interest to me were:
Indigenous Uranium Forum audio available
o EarthCycles.net
Listen Uranium Forum Defending Mother Earth
o blogtalkradio

November 30, 2009   No Comments

ETEC521 Blog Wordle

I thought it might be fun to see a Wordle of our blog postings thus far.


Wordle: ETEC521 - 2009

November 30, 2009   No Comments

Module 4 Weblog#5 by Dilip Verma

I finally found what I was looking for, evidence of Mexican Indigenous youth using the Web 2.0 for Intra cultural dialogue. There are so many speakers of Indigenous languages in Mexico, but so little digital evidence.

Nizkaloa Nahuatl

Web Site: http://miztonpixan.blogspot.com/

This site is a blog by Miztonpixan, which the user regularly updates. I cannot tell you about the content as it is all in Nahuatl, but going by the images it is  a blog by a modern youth. Unfortunately, no one has left any comments, so it is a lone crusade. However it is an example of what mexican Indigenous youth could be doing to create communities of practice. This is the only blog in a Mexican Indigenous language I have found so far.

I also just had to include this site:

Twelve canoes

Web Site: http://www.12canoes.com.au/

This is an Aboriginal  site that tells the story of some Indigenous communities in their own language using images, videos and sound. There is also the possibility of listening in English. I cannot find out much about who made it, but it is so beautiful I just had to put it up. It is eye catching and multimodal. Really This is the kind of site Oaxacan communities need to share their IK.

November 29, 2009   No Comments

Indigenous Wellness Research Institute (M4, #5)


Vision: To support the inherent rights of Indigenous peoples to achieve full and complete health and wellness by collaborating in decolonizing research and knowledge building and sharing.

This is an amazing site containing detailed information on how the Indigenous Wellness Research Institute (IWRI) is helping Indigenous people realize self-actualization. By understanding how traumatic events of the past (including the impacts of colonization and residential schools, etc) have damaged the spirits of many Indigenous people and led to a justifiable mistrust, it quickly becomes apparent why the quest for decolonization is so imperative.

Return to Wellness – this relatively short video clip is a must view as it effectively explains the goals of the IWRI and how they are working to empower Indigenous people.

Through making the IWRI’s goal of attainment of higher education the norm for Indigenous people, the hope is this will lead to realization of what is perhaps the highest level of wellness – that which comes from being afforded the opportunity to share one’s wisdom and insights in supporting others to achieve their full potential.

November 28, 2009   No Comments

a Blog – AbTeC – mod4 post5

finally I found a aboriginal blog that is built to participate in networked culture


Form their site

“The main objective of AbTeC is to discover, define and implement methods by which Aboriginal people can use networked communication technology to strengthen our cultures. AbTeC’s Skins project will bring Aboriginal community organizations together with academic institutions to conduct research into the means by which the power of digital and networked technology can be put to use in producing and preserving our knowledge, culture and language. We will work with elder who have stories to tell, bands who have histories to preserve, and Aboriginal language speakers who want to share their knowledge. The goal is to provide conceptual and practical tools that will allow us to create new, Aboriginally-determined territories within the collection of web-pages, online games, chat rooms, bulletin boards and virtual environments that we call cyberspace.”

Love it!

The site cites current projects that include the use of computers in cyber pow wows, 3D story telling and computer programing

November 28, 2009   No Comments

RICTA | Research on ICT with Aboriginal Communities (DGM Module 4-4)


RICTA was established in September 2004 to work with Aboriginal communities, use ICTs strategically and creatively, build local capacity for research, facilitate Aboriginal participation, and to facilitate connection and trust among diverse members. Members include “more than 40 people working with universities, community research institutes, Aboriginal organizations, government and the private sector. Although a Canadian project, there are several non-Canadian institutions represented, including: University of San Francisco; Universidad Metropolitana, Mexico; New Jersey Institute of Technology; University of Vienna; and University of Missouri-Columbia.

The website currently lists five ongoing member projects, and 34 other projects nation-wide. Where applicable, project websites and contact information are included. Also useful is a bibliography of Canadian publications (1980-2005) related to research in ICT use in Aboriginal Communities.

Unfortunately, it appears that this website has not been updated since 2006.

November 28, 2009   No Comments

RedWAY BC News E-zine – mod4 post4

Still on the hunt for some aboriginal blogs I came across RedWAY BC News E-zine; a free on-line electronic magazine connecting 8,400+ international subscribers

The biline reads: “Harnessing Technology to Honour, Inform and Connect Urban Aboriginal Youth to Services, Opportunities, the Community and Each Other.”

This online publication seems like a well put together site with up-to-date information. Some of its contents include:

November 28, 2009   No Comments

Early Childhood Development Intercultural Partnerships (M4, #4)


As an elementary school educator, this site immediately piqued my interest. It also helped me better understand some of the issues surrounding ethical and respectful research practices. “Nothing about us without us” is a quote that stuck with me as effectively describing how Indigenous people feel research should be conducted.

Collaborative, innovative projects between the research team and Aboriginal people are well explained including: Indigenous Child Assessment, Indigenous Fathers, Early Language Facilitation, Social Support in ECD, and others.

It seems the work of  Dr. Jessica Ball, Faculty U Vic and others is making a real difference in the lives of Aboriginal people, especially the children. The primary goal here seems to be that of building relationships and working collaboratively with Aboriginal groups in order to identify issues of concern and work together towards lasting solutions. The various project stories (which include project background, goals, activities and outcomes) are intriguing and inspiring. This site is truly a wonderful resource!

November 28, 2009   No Comments

Lessons in Learning: The Cultural Divide in Science Education for Aboriginal Learners (M4, #3)


“The First Nations people view themselves not as custodians, stewards or having dominion over the Earth, but as an integrated part in the family of the Earth. The Earth is my mother and the animals, plants and minerals are my brothers and sisters.”

– F. Henry Lickers
Biologist, member of the Turtle Clan of the Seneca Nation

There needs to be more Canadian Aboriginal people in science and engineering occupations. However, attracting them to such positions is a challenge due in part to the contradictions between the values and philosophy of Western science and those of Aboriginal people and communities.

No wonder Aboriginal youth would find mainstream science classes confusing, being that their beliefs and ways of learning are so different from those of their Western classmates. Aboriginal values need to be validated and incorporated in order to increase their participation and engagement. Information on this website provides many suggestions of ways this can be accomplished.

There are some interesting examples of how traditional knowledge has been combined with Western science to produce mutually beneficial results. Hopefully more of these partnerships can occur in the future.

November 28, 2009   No Comments

Module 4 Entry #5


A wonderful project between the Nuu-chah-nulth tribal council and Department of Canadian Heritage through Canadian Culture Online. Links to culture and language as well as a pull down menu which discusses items such as Information Technology and Infant Development. It’s incredible and uses Quick Time technology. All sections of the site have sound files done in English and the Nuu-chah-nulth language as well as an option for French language. Definitely worth taking a look at.

November 28, 2009   No Comments