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First Nations People - "Ancient Stories"

"Every culture has aspects that endure and aspects that change."

We decided to give our students experiences that would help them understand the ancient stories and oral tradition of First Nations people. Native cultures had taught this way for thousands of years. Their stories reflected their belief and value system.

In preparation the teachers read and discussed many ancient stories that were specific to their native people. Some of these were read to the students while others were told in a story telling manner and some were made available for them to read on their own. The students immersed themselves in the ancient stories of the First Nations People of their area.

In small groups they chose a specific story, summarized each story and looked for recurring cultural connections to the First Nations People from their area and possible reasons why the story was told. They wrote what they had learned about the culture from the story and why this would be important for the Native people that they were studying. These discoveries were posted on the website. (Ancient Stories from the Stoney, Ancient Stories from the Blackfoot)

Then with the help of the mentor teacher, they predicted what they were about to read as they viewed each other's work on the website. Once again they discovered that their predictions were not completely correct. They began to find similarities and differences in the stories of the different native people. They then shared their thoughts as they posted their discoveries to their website.

Copyright for student work remains with the authors.
All else copyright © 2002 Pam Irving, Lorraine Flavelle and Galileo Educational Network Association