In traditional Aboriginal education, all one’s perspectives and experiences, especially those in the spiritual and emotional dimensions, are an integral part of learning. This is known as the holistic approach to learning.
Kiuna respects this principle and makes sure students benefit from a certain level of autonomy through collaborative learning in an environment that is open to the real world and where their learning is reinvested in the community. Here are a few examples.
Nos forets chantées
A group of students from the college known as “Le collectif de Kiuna” is proud to have contributed to making the album Nos forêts chantées with Loco Locass and Jonathan Harnois.
Chanson “Nutshimit” (in the woods)
A project initiated by the Fondation Cowboys Fringants
Voices of First Nations Young Adults
Coming together; one mind
In winter 2017, as part of their English literature or ESL courses, Kiuna students published a book of creative writing entitled Coming Together; one mind.
Students were responsible for preparing a single page of creative writing based on the themes of resistance and revitalization. Students were encouraged to think about these themes in relation to their own identity, forms of resistance or revitalization they have witnessed in their community, at school, or at home, as well as in their daily lives or the lives of others. Selective use of their respective native languages was used in some texts.
Once the book was published, students shared their creative writing with audiences at Dawson College’s Indigenous Days and The Power of Indigenous Arts: Resistance and Revitalization conference organized by McGill’s Indigenous Student Alliance.
The spectacular cover art of the book was created by Jemmy Echaquan-Dubé. The students who contributed to the publication: Danika St-Laurent-Maheux, Shenna Labbé-Grégoire, Allan Kistabish, Daren Germain, Arennenha:Wi Troy Diabo, Marie-Alex Charland, Emily Doucet, Marilou McKenzie Fontaine, Tewashontake White, Iehente Cole-Gabriel, Shawerim Coocoo Weizineau, Thayra Penosway, Kate LeBlanc, Stacy Matte, Marie-Christine Petiquay and Arennenha:we Taryn Diabo.
Our Home on Native Land
Within the context of Professor Jennifer Savard’s English literature and English as a Second Language courses, students were asked to submit a creative writing piece, in any literary genre, as part of a class publication. The theme for the publication was land, nature, and the environment. Students read and discussed work by Indigenous authors about these themes. Through class discussion, students began to see that the theme was quite vast and could span from connections to the land and the teachings, to environmental concerns, to animal rights and even to the body as land and self-discovery. Students were encouraged to think about this theme in relation to their own identity, knowledge systems, and/or concerns for the land in their communities, at school or at home.
Once the book was published, students shared their creative pieces with audiences at Dawson College’s Indigenous Days and a conference organized by McGill’s Indigenous Student Alliance.