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LPSD integrating Aboriginal Storytelling Month into classrooms

Lloydminster Public School Division (LPSD) is participating in Aboriginal Storytelling Month by involving students in their month long activities.

On Monday, a proclamation was signed declaring February as Saskatchewan Aboriginal Storytelling Month. Public schools in the city are having speakers invited into their classrooms to discuss the importance of storytelling.

Coordinator of Learning for LPSD Shirley Groat says that storytelling is a tool for learning and a tradition used many years ago that is still relevant today.

“Instructional strategy that we use in our schools and classrooms that allows us to experience what storytelling would be like and start to understand some of the myths and legends.”

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In 2007 the Government of Saskatchewan mandated treaty education in the provinces education system. Groat wants this month to help bring the curriculum to life and celebrate the Aboriginal contributions to Canada.

“Our students in our schools today it’s part of their curriculum, it’s part of what they learn. So my hope for them is for the next generation to have a true understanding of our history of Canada.”

Heart of Treaty 6 is the group behind bringing awareness to reconciliation in Saskatchewan and the city has taken part by planning activities that highlight stories of understanding. One of the projects that will help with that is the feather project. Groat says that this is an opportunity to contribute artistically to storytelling.

“The feathers will be made by individuals and groups. It will allow them to create some artwork, tell their own stories. Maybe there’s some words that resonate with them after they’ve heard a story.”

Students are involved in a variety of ways, but the month is for everyone to understand and learn the history of Aboriginal peoples. Teacher at Bishop Lloyd Derek Hyland says that the activities are for the community created by the community.

“Big brother Big Sister, Office of the Treaty commissioner, the Friendship Centre. There’s tons of organizations that are helping put this all together.”

The final day of festivities on February 27 will include a screening of the documentary Birth of a Family, as well as the installation of feathers at College Park School.

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