Indigenous Knowledge and Pedagogy

Indigenous Knowledge & Pedagogy in First Nations Education: A Literature Review with Recommendations (Dr. Marie Battiste, 2002)

In response to the Government of Canada’s evolving commitment to work with First Nations to improve Aboriginal educational opportunities, Dr. Marie Battiste unveils a framework that extends beyond a program of steps to be implemented to illustrate the shift in perspective that will be required to move past the Eurocentric assumptions and prejudices that have undermined Aboriginal education and have been indifferent towards Indigenous knowledge. The task of breaking through the colonial mindset that continues to view Indigenous ways of knowing as inferior because it cannot be effectively categorized and analysed using Eurocentric logic involves acknowledging the value of Indigenous knowledge and re-examining the widespread acceptance that Eurocentric knowledge commands the most value. Battiste calls on the Canadian government to recognize that Aboriginal education is distinct and accept that they have a responsibility to protect Aboriginal knowledge, languages, and heritage.

Aboriginal learning and identity continue to be affected by curriculum and authoritative behaviour in Canadian schools that propagate a Eurocentric perspective of learning and thinking which have isolated Aboriginal people from educational opportunities that build individual and community wholeness. In the pursuit of balancing our educational system, indigenous ways of knowing must be valued and respected. Embracing the inclusion of indigenous knowledge in our schools moves beyond teaching indigenous heritage and creates transformative educational opportunities that seek to overcome the mistrust and deprivation that still emanate from colonization.






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