Students came up with their own definition for “Reconciliation”… here are some definitions.
* the restoration of friendly relations.
* the action of making one view or belief compatible with another.
* to settle or resolve an issue
Students were asked to work in groups of four, reading the survivor stories provided. For each story (minimum of three), the group is asked to write notes about what happened and then put themselves in the position of the residential school student and tell what it would take for them to achieve reconciliation.
After reading the survivor stories, students read a poem by Rita Joe…
I lost my talk
The talk you took away.
When I was a little girl
At Shubenacadie school.
You snatched it away:
I speak like you
I think like you
I create like you
The scrambled ballad, about my world.
Two ways I talk
Both ways I say,
Your way is more powerful.
So gently I offer my hand and ask,
Let me find my talk
So I can teach you about me.
Students shared their feelings about the poem. Ms. Joe has put into words what many students have written about over the past few weeks. Her language defined who she is and because of being forced to use a foreign language she was unable to explain who she really was and what her Native culture meant to her.
Students watched the video, Fallen Feather (information can be found here http://www.fallenfeatherproductions.com)
As we near the end of the project, students will create a memorial tile for the students who died at Wabasca Residential School (St. John’s Indian Residential School) from 1895 until it’s closing in 1966. Students in Block 7 will also create a “Friendship” tile to send to their pen pals at Calling Lake.