The Summer Solstice: A Time of Gathering and Honoring
This week is a time to gather and honor. We celebrate the summer solstice and honor National Indigenous People's Day on June 21st and all throughout the week. Students across the school board will be participating in a variety of learning opportunities including thinking about the importance of the summer solstice, celebrating in song together, and learning more about diverse Indigenous cultures. June 21st will open by celebrating in song and music together with the Isaac Family, Bkejwanong Territory, Deb and Barry Milliken, Kettle and Stony Point First Nation, David Plain, Aamjiwnaang First Nation along with an Ancestral Lands Acknowledgement brought to you by SCCDSB youth voice and photos from our year together. Youth activist Theland Kickosway will share a song with the students as he reflects on the day. Award-winning music group, Twin Flames, will bring two classroom sessions of song and story to classes across the system. Métis musician, Brianna Lizotte, will engage students in interactive sessions to learn about Métis culture. Artist Rhonda Snow will share stories of her paintings connected to Mother Earth and will provide a doodling opportunity for classrooms. We welcome Aalla who will share about Inuit culture with the youth. Lynda Lou Classens, Bkejwanong First Nation Public Library, will engage students in stories and 200 youth had the opportunity to celebrate at the Bkejwanong Children’s Centre Parade on June 20 to start the week off together! These opportunities and more will be available to staff and students across the system as well as continued learning from Inspiring Indigenous People, which we have been excited to learn this month from musicians Chelsey June and Jaji of Twin Flames, author, former journalist, hip hop artist, and politician, Wab Kinew, NASA astronaut John Herrington, and Anishinaabe artist Moses Lunham!
Acknowledgement of Ancestral Lands
Elders Opening Across SCCDSB
Elders Cecil Isaac, Cedric Isaac, Bkejwanong Territory; Deb and Barry Milliken, Kettle and Stony Point First Nation, and Sandra and Leigh Ann Isaac, Bkejwanong Territory.
Theland Kicknosway, Bkejwanong Territory shares about the Summer Solstice and gives Thanks to Creation with a Song
Music Group Twin Flames shares story and song in two sessions (One English session & One French Session only available on June 21)
Rhonda shares stories behind some of her paintings as well as provides an opportunity for students to create their own doodle based on listening to the stories.
Materials: Open Doodle to print, pencil, markers/pencil crayons. Suggested to doodle after the session.
Print this ahead of time for students to use the open space when Rhonda shares a story or after.
Doodling with Anishinaabe Artist Rhonda Snow
Rhonda breaks down how to doodle, demonstrates techniques, and encourages students to create their own doodles by spending time with what they want to doodle.
Materials: Doodles to print, pencil, markers/pencil crayons or paint.
Print these doodles Ahead of Time for students to use!
Rhonda walks through adding to this doodle below and either colouring or painting the doodle.
Additional Doodle for students to use.
Open Doodle space for students to create within.
Print these doodles Ahead of Time!
Brianna shares about the Métis history of music as well as teaches students how to play the spoons. Get your spoons ready and have some fun!
2 spoons per student
Brianna shares a bit more about Métis history of music and kitchen parties as well as teaches students the Red River Jig! Get ready to dance!
Open space to dance
Inuit Culture and Games with Aalla
Lighting the Qulliq with Aalla
The Qulliq is an Inuit lamp that provides light and warmth to the Earth. The lamp is made out of soapstone and is shaped in a half moon with a vessel to hold oil for burning. The oil is poured into the vessel, and a mix of arctic cotton, suputi, and moss, ijju/maniq, is delicately placed along its groove.
This wick then absorbs the oil below and it can then be lit. Once lit, the wick slowly burns, and is tended with a hook-shaped tool, the taqquti. It was originally made by a husband for his wife. This symbolized that she was the flame keeper of the home. On a deeper spiritual level, it also honours the fact that women are the life carriers.
Inuit Games with Aalla
Aalla and his son demonstrate Inuit games. He provided SCCDSB permission to use this video in connection with this webpage. Aalla will talk about the history of the games, the rules of the games and you will also learn about Inuit culture and language.
Inuit Games began in the harsh environment of the Arctic where agility, strength and endurance are necessary for survival. These games were born out of a need to maintain fitness, practice life skills and the need for social interaction.
Storytelling with Lynda Lou Classens, Bkejwanong Territory
Lynda Lou Reads, Lessons From Mother Earth
This is great for K-6!
Tess learns from her grandmother that her “garden” is all of nature that surrounds her. As they pick plants and berries they do so carefully and with respect. Tess discovers that if she cares for the Earth it will provide for her just as it provided for generations past. The text of this book is complemented by beautiful watercolor illustrations that encourage students to appreciate our natural world. Click here for a sample grade 3-5 lesson plan that can be adapted.
Additional connections: Grandma shares the first rule of the garden with Tess: “Not everything in the garden is ready for picking just yet …. Rule number one is that you must always take good care of our garden.” What do students think Grandma means by this rule? How might you take care of the garden? Why is it important to take care of the garden? Why is it important to have rules?
Discuss with the students how they think Tess felt after spending a day in her Grandmother’s garden. What do you think Tess learned?
Lynda Lou Reads, Trudy's Rock Story
This is great for K-4!
When a young girl from the Gitxsan Nation argues with her brother, she remembers the teachings of her grandmother and goes in search of a stone to share her feelings with. This engaging story teaches children that it is okay to have feelings and shows them how to process and release negative thoughts.
Conversation Starters (taken directly from the book): What did Trudy’s grandmother do? Why is it good to let go of all the negative feelings? Why did Trudy look for a stone? Where would you go to find a special stone to hold? What do you think Trudy said to the stone that she found? Why did Trudy give the stone back to Mother Earth? Why do you think it’s important to tell stories? What do you do when you feel angry or sad?
Pour amorcer la discussion (les questions sont dans le livre même): Que faisait la grand-mère de Trudy? Pourquoi est-ce une bonne idée de laisser s’envoler tous les sentiments négatifs? Pourquoi Trudy est-elle partie à la recherche d’un caillou? Où irais-tu pour trouver un caillou spécial? D’après toi, qu’a dit Trudy à son caillou? Pourquoi aimes-tu ce caillou plus que les autres? Pourquoi Trudy a-t-elle redonné le caillou à Mère Nature? Pourquoi penses-tu qu’il est important de raconter des histoires? Que fais-tu quand tu ressens de la colère ou de la tristesse?
“What is one thing you could do every day to be mindful?” or “Where do you feel most at peace?” Students could draw a picture of their mindfulness practice or create their peaceful setting using loose parts.
Click here to have an alternate format of this webpage to share with classrooms using google slides.
Also visit these two webpages this month and summer for continued connected learning!
Participate in these continued learning opportunities all week!
Anishinabe Giizhigad ... what does it mean to you?
Celebrating Indigenous Peoples Day in Chatham-Kent!
Let's Learn More!
More with Theland ...
More with Brianna ...
Kitchen Party Playlist with Brianna Lizotte
Play the Spoons Demonstration
Play the Spoons Demonstration in French
More Learning Here:
The oral history of Inuit is filled with many folktales. In this traditional story, a young owl catches a lemming to eat. Inuit stories are often instructive and, with this tale, children quickly learn the value of being clever and humble, and why pride and arrogance are to be avoided.
What lessons does the lemming learn?
Can you think of any other morality tales you may know? Consider stories such as Aesop’s Fables, the Monkey King, the Gingerbread Man, Anansi the Spider, the Three Billy Goats Gruff or the Three Little Pigs.
How is The Owl and the Lemming similar to the story you know? How is it different?
Discuss the ways the lemming tried to outwit the owl.
Read another story and compare/contrast.
More Learning Here:
Listen & View
Les premiers peuples
It's My Party: TVO Kids National Indigenous People's Day
Click "watch on You Tube" as this video plays on You Tube directly.
Get Hands On & Continue Learning!
Connect with Nature
Colouring for all ages!
Keep the Learning Going!
Visit these two webpages to keep the learning going!
More Learning for this week ...
Register Here for Virtual Summer Solstice Indigenous Festival
Register Here for features from Communities Across Canada