A longtime Project of Heart collaborator has shared some very useful and timely news with us today. Here’s Lisa Howell, an educator located on unceded, unsurrendered, ancestral lands of the Algonquin people in Ottawa:
For virtual students, teachers, staff, and administrators, I have created a “virtual heart garden”. You are invited to share words of solidarity, feelings, and commitments to reconciliation. There are options to upload drawings as well. I explain all of this on the short (less than 5 mins!) video tutorial below.
Link to Virtual Heart garden: https://padlet.com/lhowe054/heartgarden
Here is a link with a short video tutorial I made for using the padlet: https://youtu.be/aTOSF-dX1oc
To add your contributions to the padlet, click on the padlet link. Share this link with your students. Once you are in the Virtual Heart garden, you will see many messages. To add yours, click on the plus sign in the bottom right corner. A “sticky note” will pop up. At the top of the sticky note, you are invited to add your name, your treaty/territory and your school and grade. Below, write a message to honour the 215 children and to make a commitment to the work ahead. At the bottom of the sticky note, there are options to add photographs or drawings. Padlet saves automatically. Once you are finished writing, click anywhere on the padlet. Now, you can go back to your post if you want to edit or change the background colour. Just hover over the top right-hand corner of your sticky note. You will see options to edit come up. Important reminders: please instruct your students to only write on their sticky note. They are not to modify/change anyone else’s. Also, as this is a public memorialisation, please review your students’ messages to ensure that they are honourable, with correct spelling and terminology.
This is a public call to action for change in this country: to value and honour the lives of Indigenous children, their families and communities, while also expressing our collective grief and honoring of the children lost and the families left behind.
Thank you Lisa Howell for this amazing resource!
It’s hard to think of a more appropriate title for a publication. With the work of reconciliation picking up pace across the country, this hard-hitting, truth-telling teacher resource makes it clear that Saskatchewan’s tragic IRS experience will not be left out of the narrative.
Published by University of Regina’s Faculty of Education, Saskatchewan’s Project of Heart has been working up to this moment for almost two years.
Publications Manager Shuana Niessen had this to say:
“Researching and writing this ebook has been the most meaningful work in my career.
Pulling together school-specific information from primary source documents, news clippings, research, and the NCTR reports along with listening to survivor/thriver stories have all contributed to a greater understanding of the complex issues around the history of Indian residential schools in Saskatchewan. I am so grateful to have had this opportunity to learn and I hope that others will find Shattering the Silence: The Hidden History of Indian Residential Schools in Saskatchewan an informative and accessible ebook from which to learn and teach about Indian residential schools in Saskatchewan.”
On behalf of Project of Heart (National) we want to throw out a huge meegwetch to Shuana and the University of Regina’s Faculty of Education for the sustained commitment that was undertaken to create this excellent resource.
May we NEVER attempt to whitewash our collective history again.
Image: student Samantha Wells takes on role of courtroom artist
A federal Human Rights Tribunal in Ottawa was recently the scene of a Project of Heart “social action component” as students from Elizabeth Wyn Wood attended tribunal proceedings to show solidarity with the First Nations Child and Family Caring Society’s Executive director Cindy Blackstock, who took the stand to argue against a cynical government motion to dismiss the tribunal’s hearings into systemic underfunding of First Nations children in the child welfare system in Canada. Continue reading Human Rights Tribunal attracts social action from POH students
On the day before the Prime Minister’s official apology CBC Ottawa asked Project of Heart’s Greta Neepin and Sylvia Smith into the studio to talk about what the apology means to survivors and how the residential school era is being taught in schools like Elizabeth Wyn Wood Alternate Site.
The segment includes interviews with Wyn Wood students Violet Roseheart and Tommy Peacock.
Our thanks PODCO New Media for converting the file to podcast format.
As part of Aboriginal Awareness Week, Project of Heart held a workshop for employees at Indian Residential Schools Resolution Canada (IRSRC) and representatives from the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.
Embracing the POH initiative, participants had positive comments on the workshop experience: “I learned that Canadians do care about history and how it informs the present” and “it would be great to see this in my son’s school” were typical of the responses the demonstration elicited.
Participant quotes from the students of Winnipeg’s Southeast Collegiate were very powerful — and worth sharing here:
“When they started Residential Schools, everything was different. They lost a lot of hope. When our people went to Residential Schools, they were physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually abused by clergy and school staff. Today, many of the Residential School survivors have been drinking a lot. They still cannot stop the pain from the past.” Myrna F Continue reading In their words: Southeast Collegiate students
A descriptive guide to incorporating project of heart into multiple subject areas.
Teachers should feel free to add their suggestions to the wiki.