Design an Aboriginal Shelter

ABShelterWhat happens when you let your students come up with the task? A great activity that students have already bought into because they think it’s their idea!

We were teaching social studies to our fourth and fifth graders and were learning about the way of life for the different Aboriginal groups historically in Canada. Our question to our students was, “How can you show us what you have learned?”

Their responses, “Can we make a project? Can we build a tipi? Can I make a poster?” Continue reading

You Won’t See My Plan Book On Pinterest

PlanBook3You’ve seen those beautiful planners all over Pinterest and on everyone’s social media. They are masterpieces that we wish could emulate, but alas, us ninjas have a lot going on and so our plan books have been an evolution. We realized early on that our plans aren’t pretty and we needed a way to share a classroom and thus, share our plans with each other.

Finding the planning style for you takes time. Here are some of our best tips for figuring out your planning style. Continue reading

The Power of YouTube

YouTube1As you know, YouTube is a wealth of resources for professional learning, for fun and to learn how to fix your broken gas dryer (ninjas like to fix their own things after all). Using YouTube in the classroom with your students is also a powerful tool (assuming you are allowed to)! Schools and districts who block YouTube are living in the wrong century! To us, it would be like banning a library.

As a teacher it is an invaluable tool. There are so many things you can do. Remember you need to be signed into your Google account first.
Continue reading

Métis Storytelling Through Art

Metis1Often we do not have the time to get deep into every outcome in our Program of Studies.  One of the best ways to teach children about different cultures is through their art.

This is a lesson we’ve done with our students for years.

If you look for them, there are many books out there illustrated by Aboriginal artists of Canada.  Their artwork is inspirational and many students connect with the illustrations of these books.  They often depict the oral traditional stories of various groups of Aboriginal people and so they become invaluable in teaching students about the belief systems of other people in a creative way. Continue reading

Finding Your Peeps

FindPeepsThe most difficult part of teaching is often the fact you are in a room with young people all day long every day. It would be nice to get out and talk to the adults, but the mere culture of school often keeps us from having conversations about our real lives outside of the walls of the school.

That is why finding your peeps is so important. Continue reading