Students at Langley Fine Arts in First Nations 12 class with their teacher creating J4IW witness pieces that they gave as gifts to share what they learned about the legacy of Indian Residential Schools.
Students from three Langley schools presented Project of Heart to the Indian Residential School Adjudication Secretariat on December 4th in Vancouver to share about the importance of all students learning about Canada’s true history. Josette Dandurand and Cecelia Reekie were also invited to share their stories about the legacy of residential schools.
BCTF staff celebrate Orange Shirt Day
Orange Shirt Day is a legacy of the St. Joseph Mission (SJM) residential school commemoration event held in Williams Lake, BC, Canada, in the spring of 2013. It grew out of Phyllis’s account of having her shiny new orange shirt taken away Continue reading BCTF Orange Shirt Day
In honour of Aboriginal Day on June 21, 2015 and the Truth and Reconciliation Ceremony which took place on June 5, 2015 Shelby Croft’s grade four class from Langley, BC decorated hearts to put in the school’s garden. The hearts were decorated in memory of those who were affected by Indian residential schools.
The students had participated in several weeks of cultural lessons which ended with the history of residential schools. The students were very shocked and angry learning what happened to the students who attended those schools. It gave a brief glimpse into the lives of others. Some of the hearts were then sent off to Ontario for the Truth and Reconciliation closing ceremony to be placed along with 1000 heart flowers from across the country.
Several classes from Byrne Creek Secondary honoured survivors and those children lost to residential schools by creating a heart garden in their memory. Many students from across the country participated in creating heart flowers and sent them for the closing ceremony where the final report for the Truth and Reconciliation was delivered. Over 1,000 heart flowers were planted at Rideau Hall in Ottawa.
After learning about the legacy of Indian Residential Schools through a presentation by Cecelia Reekie, one of Langley’s Cultural Presenters, the Grade 6 classes at Yorkson have made hearts out of seed paper to send with Cecelia for her trip to the Truth and Reconciliation Closing Ceremony in Ottawa. The hearts are made out of paper embellished with wild flower seeds. The message they’d like to send is that the survivors receiving the hearts can plant the wild flowers and watch them grow in hopes of healing their hearts. The students and teachers are sending their love and hope for all of the survivors of residential schools. The students were very touched by Cecelia’s story.
As a legacy to the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of Canada, former students of Indian Residential Schools and their families, the TRC, the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society, KAIROS and Project of Heart invite children and youth across the country to create a Heart Garden.
Canadian Teachers’ Federation president Dianne Woloschuk along with AGM delegates from many B.C. locals were in attendance and were thrilled to learn about the new Justice 4 Indigenous Women initiative through Project of Heart.
Grand Chief Stewart Phillip was the keynote speaker at the BCTF AGM where over 700 teachers gathered in Victoria. He opened by speaking to the wonderful work being done by teachers from across our province.
Melissa Hyland, Lorelei Williams and Cecelia Reekie (second, third and fourth from right) presented at the Kwantlen Cultural Centre to commemorate International Women’s Day. Organized by Langley teachers, this event celebrated Aboriginal Women and brought awareness to Canada’s missing/murdered women.