Aboriginal Peoples of Canada

A resource

Aboriginal Pedagogy

Learning About Walking in Beauty: Placing Aboriginal Perspectives in Canadian Classrooms

For generations, Aboriginal stakeholders have been calling for improvements to school curricula. Learning About Walking in Beauty is ground breaking because it demonstrates that Canadians also want curricula to present Aboriginal histories and cultures honestly and respectfully. Broad inclusion of Aboriginal perspectives in school curricula will increase students' awareness about this land, our interwoven histories and current issues in the relationship facing all Peoples who live in Turtle Island, now known as Canada.
(Description taken from "Learning About Walking in Beauty")

The First Nations learner dwells in a world of continual re-formation, where interactive cycles, rather than disconnected events, occur. In this world, nothing is simply a cause or an effect, but the expression of the interconnectedness of life. These relationships are circular, rather than linear, holistic, and cumulative rather than compartmentalized. The mode of learning for First Nations people reflects and honours this understanding. (Description taken from the CCL First Nations Learning Model)


Lifelong learning for Inuit is grounded in traditional “Inuit Values and Beliefs,” as articulated in Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit (IQ). To illustrate the strength of IQ, the model depicts 38 family and community members, including ancestors, “holding up” a learning blanket, with each figure representing an IQ value and belief. Inclusion of ancestors represents the sacred Inuit tradition of “naming” – a practice which fosters Inuk identity, kinship relations, and the transmission of
intergenerational knowledge. (Description taken from the CCL Inuit Learning Model)

Metis Learning Model

The Métis learner, like the tree, is a complex, living entity that needs certain conditions for optimum growth. As conditions change throughout the natural cycle, so will the regenerative capacity of the tree. The health of the tree, or the Métis learner, impacts the future health of the root system and the “forest” of learners. (Description taken from the CCL Metis Learning Model)



The Ways of Knowing Guide

This guide is a journey of Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee traditional knowledge reflected through worldview, values, beliefs and stories that speak to the fundamental principle of ensuring sustainable relationships with the land. While there are many Indigenous nations in Canada, this guide focuses on the knowledge of the Anishinaabe and Haudenosaunee nations as the shared caretakers of the Great Lakes area.

First Nations Pedagogy


The ways of knowing, learning, and teaching inherent to the traditional methods of informal and formal aboriginal education are profound and important in this  21st Century. It is important that all First Nations peoples have access to education and health planning that is shaped by their own ancestral ways. (Description taken from First Nations Pedagogy website)

An excellent resource with usable lesson plans about Storytelling, Elders, Talking Circles, Culture, and Experiential Learning (great for a culminating activity) to name a few.
Aboriginal Pedagogy Research Review

An Australian resource, which none-the-less stresses the importance of methodology in teaching.

Aboriginal Pedagogy is about using Aboriginal perspectives in your teaching methods.


Lesson and Unit Plans



The Learning Circle has been produced to help meet Canadian educators' growing need for elementary-level learning exercises on First Nations.
(From Indian and Northern Affairs Canada)

Ages 4-7
Ages 8-11
Ages 12-14
Ages 14-16

Linking Aboriginal Perspectives to the Ontario Curriculum

Download these convenient guides to identify expectations in the elementary curriculum that provide opportunities to bring Aboriginal perspectives into the classroom.


Practical Teaching Strategies for the Elementary Classroom

Download these professionally developed teaching strategies, designed to help Ontario teachers bring Aboriginal perspectives into the classroom.


Shannen's Dream - School Resources


Education for reconciliation and social justice: Lesson plans to teach students about inequities currently faced by First Nations children. Find lesson plans and resources here!

GoodMinds Aboriginal Perspectives: The Teacher's Toolkit

Includes books to use and lessons that could be taught across the curriculum for all grade levels.

First Nations and Explorers Unit Plan

from the Council of Ontario Drama and Dance Educators


This unit focuses on the Social Studies topic of First Nations peoples and Explorers and should be taught at the same time these units are being taught. In terms of the Arts curriculum, students should be familiar with basic tableaux skills and should have some experience with role play. (Description taken from the CODE website)