Michelle Souliere (she/her)
My name is Michelle Souliere, I currently work, study, and reside on the unceded traditional territories of the Stó:lō, Matsqui, Kwantlen, Katzie, and Semiahmoo First Nations. I also wish to recognize the long history of First Nations Peoples in the area in which I was raised. I acknowledge and wish to show respect to these communities today. I was brought up on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe Peoples and graciously welcomed onto the lands of Nipissing First Nations, Dokis First Nations and Temagami First Nations. I am grateful to have been invited to participate in numerous ceremonies, Pow Wows, smudgings’, to have spoken with local elders, and to have been embraced by local Indigenous communities. I moved to British Columbia (BC) ten years ago, when I decided to join my sister in the Western part of Canada, and I am fortunate to have the opportunity to learn about Indigenous communities in BC.
I am a Special Education Teaching Assistant (SEA) specializing in social-emotional development who is on the career path of becoming an Elementary School French Immersion Teacher. I am fluently bilingual in English and French. I have recently completed my Bachelor of Arts in General Studies with a minor in English. Next year, I will be attending teacher’s college through the French Professional Linking Program (PLP) at Simon Fraser University, where I will obtain my teaching certificate and Bachelor of Education. The program is part-time which will allow me to continue working full time as a SEA and spend time with my family. I am a mother to two young and adorable children with who I have proudly begun to share Indigenous Knowledges. Once I complete the PLP program I will be seeking an exhilarating position as a French Immersion Teacher to bring a student-focused perspective to the team. I am passionate and dedicated to supporting and encouraging people to find their true potentials while working with other staff members and students.
Another one of my passions is Indigenizing the curriculum. I am a self-identified Métis who also has Mohawk, Algonquin, and French heritage. My particular research interest is studying Indigenous cultures. Although I am Métis, I strive to better understand the practices of diverse Indigenous cultures in BC in order to better share Indigenous cultures with my students. In my job, I have demonstrated cultural sensitivity when helping students learn new terms, concepts, and how to regulate emotionally. I have experience working with Indigenous children, Aboriginal Support Workers, and have been involved in Indigenous presentations at work. I want to help educate children and support the creation of a more just society for all.
My goal is to spread awareness surrounding Indigeneity. When I was a young student, we were not taught about cultural appropriation, Residential Schools, assimilation, the 60’s scoop, inherent rights or treaties in school. My hope is that our contributions to this project will help educators address these topics with students in the best way possible. There is a dire need for Indigenous resources in schools as well as resources that guide educators on how to teach content respectfully. My objectives as a teacher are to educate students on Indigenous cultures and for myself to continue to learn from the wealth of Indigenous Knowledges. Hopefully, this resource will help equip educators with a better understanding of First Nations communities in BC. I am very grateful and proud to have had the opportunity to edit this project. The information within is invaluable.