3 Foundational Resources

Michelle Souliere and Katelyn Bouvier

Throughout the editing process, several themes and resources emerged; therefore, it is pertinent for us to provide foundational resources of Indigenous Knowledges. In the next section, we have compiled a list of imperative resources that provide the educator with fundamental prior knowledge. The foundational resource weblinks will assist educators by providing the scholarly background needed to engage with issues of colonialism, first contact, Residential schools, and Truth and Reconciliation. We have also listed other sets of resources that could provide aid in Indigenizing the curriculum and could assist with identifying authentic Indigenous resources.


Historically, education in Canada has been used as a tool of Indigenous erasure. Indian Residential Schools (i.e., Residential Schools) segregated Indigenous children in Canada with the purpose of “killing the Indian in the child” (Joseph, 2018, p. 53). Residential Schools followed by Indian Day Schools were filled with abuse, neglect, and rampant racism. Within Canada’s education system that prioritized and privileged  settlers, Indigenous erasure land dispossession, and resource extraction were key to the foundation of “modern Canada” (Joseph, 2018).


Indigenous Peoples, along with their ways of knowing and their relationships with the land were discarded. Colonial institutions cherry-picked Indigenous Knowledges and claimed them as their own (Smith, 1999). The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) (2008 – 2015) documents the atrocities of Residential Schools and identifies concrete steps Canadians need to take towards reconciliation. The TRC highlights “94 calls to action” in all spheres of Canadian society and its institutions (Truth and Reconciliation Commission, 2015). While the TRC analyses the Residential School system as a part of a “cultural genocide” committed by Canada, critics argue that the high death rates and ongoing colonial harm should be considered genocide (Allooloo, 2021).


As educators, we all have a role to play in reconciliation. Many BC schools have top-down implemented Indigenization curriculum imposed. These are rarely successful as educators are not given the preparatory tools needed to authentically engage with this content. In other cases, educators are asked to initiate Indigenization on their own without any support. Many non-Indigenous educators feel overwhelmed, guilty, and don’t know where to start. The resources provided in this book are curated to help educators in selecting and sharing Indigenous resources in their classrooms in a respectful way that will help us all work towards reconciliation.


Allooloo, S. (2021). Canada’s Indigenous genocide is ongoing. Truthout.  https://truthout.org/articles/canadas-indigenous-genocide-is-ongoing/

Joseph, B. (2018). 21 things you may not know about the Indian Act: Helping Canadians make reconciliation with Indigenous Peoples a reality. Indigenous Relations Press.

Smith, L.T. (1999). Decolonizing methodologies: Research and Indigenous Peoples. ZED Books.

Truth and Reconciliation Commission. (2015). Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada: Calls to Action. https://ehprnh2mwo3.exactdn.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/01/Calls_to_Action_English2.pdf


Foundational Resource

Authenticating Indigenous Resources:



First Peoples Principles of Learning:



Indian Residential Schools and Reconciliation Resources

First Nations Education Steering Committee



Truth and Reconciliation: Summary of Final Report and Call to Action (PDF)




Indigenous Ancestral Territory World Map (includes territories, languages, and treaties)



First Peoples in Canada: A guide for Newcomers





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Indigenous Teaching Resources: Students Collection Copyright © 2022 by Michelle Souliere and Katelyn Bouvier is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

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