Main menu

Pages

Indigenous Education: Christine M'Lot Brings Quiet History to Life

When Christine M’Lot was a high school student, her grandmother testified in front of the Truth Commission in Canada about her experience at a residential school in the country for indigenous children. The young Ms. M’Lot didn’t know what her grandmother endured.

Her family didn’t talk about such things at home. And at school, most of what she learned about indigenous culture happened centuries ago. Currently an educator, M’Lot is at the forefront of Canada’s “Indigenous Education.”

Why i wrote this

The spirit of indigenous renewal has helped transform Canada’s education, voice the history of silence, and revive indigenous learning practices.

Her lessons introduce students to indigenous culture through math, coding, architecture and essays. But more broadly, this curriculum introduces students to indigenous “learning methods.” Seeing the educational potential of indigenous content today, she describes it as a “revival” and fits perfectly into the title of her new textbook.

Empathy and a sense of justice drive the work of this curriculum, but so does awe and resilience, says M’Lot. Education in Canada has made progress in tackling the truth, but much of the learning has focused on the painful past. “I don’t want to focus solely on the trauma of it, but I want to focus on beauty and resilience,” she says.

Winnipeg, Manitoba

Christine M’Lot grew up feeling invisible to her culture.

Throughout most of her public education in Winnipeg, Anishinaabe educators say she saw few indigenous representatives
Voice, except for a single book assignment for her senior year. It wasn’t until the university that she welcomed her first indigenous teacher and was introduced to modern indigenous culture. Beyond centuries ago tents and nomadic lifestyles, her early social studies have ceased.

Finally, looking at modern indigenous cultures reflected unleashed questions in my family that I didn’t know I had. “Because she doesn’t know what she doesn’t know,” she says. It set her on a career path that puts her at the forefront of “Indigenous Education” in Canada.

Why i wrote this

The spirit of indigenous renewal has helped transform Canada’s education, voice the history of silence, and revive indigenous learning practices.

Today, M’Lot, a high school teacher in downtown Winnipeg, designs classes and projects that introduce students to indigenous culture through math, coding, architecture and essays. But more broadly, these lessons introduce students to indigenous “learning methods.” Seeing the educational potential of indigenous content today, she describes it as a “revival” and fits perfectly into the title of her new textbook.

“Resurrection” is an annotated anthology of contemporary indigenous writers and artists, combining teacher guides and content that integrates indigenous teaching styles. This includes everything from learning circles that can be adapted to all age groups to personal reflections by M’Lot and co-editor Katya Adamov Ferguson to stimulate indigenous learning methods through storytelling.

Comments