This spring, I was asked to teach a Grade Four class how to show respect for the environment. To get them thinking from a new perspective, I brought up a story from the First Nations people about their tradition called “K’aaw K’iihl”. When the Skidegate community in Haida Gwaii attend a feast, they all bring their own containers to bring food back home. The host even cooks extra to ensure their guests have enough to take away at the end of the feast.
I would usually not expect to bring food back from a party, and would definitely not bring a container with intent to collect the leftovers. At the same time, thinking of the leftover food going to waste, disposable plates and cups filling the garbage can or landfills and polluting the environment, or thinking of the energy used to get rid of them–I can sure start to understand the benefits of K’aaw K’iihl.
I asked the students to suggest how they can learn from K’aaw K’iihl. Continue reading