It is imperative that teachers understand Indigenous lesson plans must be considered holistically. That means that the Indigenous teachings and intentions that are part of the language and culture must be considered. Non-Indigenous teachers should consider consulting Indigenous advisors to ensure that the integrity of the content is not unintentionally lost or compromised.
- Video material featuring Aboriginal people and cultural activities as a base for constructing teaching resources and we invite teachers to use these resources. We also encourage teachers to use this video material to construct their own lessons.
- The University of Regina has conducted workshops with teachers from grades 3 to 6 to help them include an Aboriginal perspective in their mathematics lessons (see example at: http://www.aboriginalperspectives.uregina.ca/workshop2010) . On this web site are the lessons, background material on the Aboriginal themes for the lessons, and a description of the material in the kits that the teachers received at the workshops.
- Included is a collection of Aboriginal games which provide a rich source of material for the construction of lessons.
- PEDAGOGY that embraces Indigenous ways of knowing are fostered by approaches to teaching and learning that include purposeful thinking about people, places and processes.
- The word Etuaptmumk, or Two-Eyed Seeing, communicates the belief that the most beneficial outcome occurs when we consider multiple perspectives in understanding and exploring ideas. Two-Eyed Seeing helps us to acknowledge the idea of wholeness, a part of many Indigenous knowledge systems: seeing things through Indigenous perspectives (represented as one whole eye), while also seeing western ways of knowing (also represented as a whole eye), inviting these two eyes to work together as they do in binocular vision.
- A weaving back and forth between knowledge systems that embrace a flow between the strengths of the two ways, to best suit the circumstances, strengthens the approach further.
- Math that Matters – Math lesson plans with a focus on Social Justice Education (Amazon link to text that can be purchased).
- Four Directions Teachings – Blackfoot, Cree, Ojibwe, Mohawk, and Mi’kmaw lessons for K-12.
- Aboriginal Education – Elementary Math – Lesson plans and resources focused on Math instruction through Indigenous cultural concepts
- Games from the Aboriginal People of North America – Groups of games from Indigenous nations, grouped by themes such as probability, data management and geometry
- Aboriginal Perspectives on Math Workshops (Grade 4), (Grade 6) – Examples of culturally specific instruction on Math from the University of Regina and its partnered institutions
- Teaching Mathematics in a First Peoples Context (Grade 8&9) – The Math First Peoples Resource Guide is designed to support teachers of Mathematics 8 and 9 extend their existing practice to incorporate new approaches more reflective of the realities of First Peoples
- McDowell Foundation project “Culture-Based School Mathematics for Reconciliation and Professional Development”5 Appendix F (pp. 112-115) provides a description of each video, plus the following links:
- Birch Bark Biting lesson: Analogue to symmetry and angles
- Dream Catcher lesson: Analogue to polygons. Two-eyed seeing made explicit for learners.
- Culture Based School Mathematics: An 18-minute conversation between consultant Sharon Meyer and teacher Serena Palmer about her developing and teaching math lessons that incorporate Indigenous mathematizing.
- NMAI:Identity by Design-tradition, change, and celebration in native women’s dresses Images of early First Nation clothing designs – simple patterns for math concept in measurement. Corresponding book: https://www.amazon.ca/-/fr/National-Museum-American-Indian/dp/0061153699?language=en_CA.
- Zentangles – using patterns
Targeted Grade Level
- L is for lines Pre-school themes – good line activity that could be referenced to how FN used lines in their pre-contact items such as parfleche
- ATEP Medicine Garden
- Indigenizing Math Through Culturally Based Story Telling 4-5 A teacher, Alana Underwood, published an article in the BC Association of Mathematics Teachers’ journal Vector, 60(2), 2019. It is about how to use Small Number videos and stories for math.
- Life in Beads 4-6 Beads on dresses.
- Percentage and Beads : teaching math outcomes using beadwork.
- Aboriginal Perspectives Grade Six Mathematics Workshop
- Lesson plans for Gr. 6 math
- Stealing the Sun: Surface Area and Rectangular Prisms. Students will make the props in math class. Students must create sketches of their rectangle, and figure out how big the surface area of the rectangle needs to be. While each student will create their own rectangle, students will work in groups and record their findings on chart paper.
- Stereotypes by Numbers: Investigating and Graphing the Representations of First Nation, Inuit and Métis peoples in School Library Materials.
- Introduction to various types of graphs.
- First Nations Math Education Provides some ideas toward FN math perspectives.
- Kate Nonesuch Family Math Fun Has good activities to offer for home teaching or simple math in the classroom also has some great folding box patterns.
- Inuktitut computer games Inuit online activities.
- Native American Lesson Plans 2 – 10. More lessons offered by an American site, HOWEVER, many great ideas to be used in the area of math and science.
- Overview of the Lesson Plans: The Meaning of Culture-Based Arts Curriculum Connect to a grade and topic (can focus on math) USA content but much culture is shared with our First Nations culture.
- Lone Dog’s Winter Count American site but good story of traditional robe paintings and connection to math.
The Adventures of Small Number5
Dr. Veselin Jungic, Simon Fraser University (Math Catcher) “Small Number” is the name of a fictitious young Indigenous boy who is adventurous in his First Nations land. He gets into a lot of mischief. All the stories involve Western mathematics embedded in authentic Indigenous contexts, for example, Alberta’s Siksika First Nation, and coastal First Nations.
The following animated stories/videos may easily be transferred to Saskatchewan, or inspire a mathematics teacher to develop a parallel authentic Saskatchewan Indigenous math story.
- Small Number Counts to 100: This story is situated in the Siksika First Nation of the Blackfoot Confederation in southern Alberta. The story can be shown to elementary school students as a counting practice/puzzle or as a pattern recognition problem. For high school students it can be a way to introduce arithmetic progressions, modular addition, or an idea of number systems with a base different than 10.
- Small Number and the Basketball Tournament: Small Number demonstrates how a basic understanding of combinatorics can help in all aspects of life, even basketball! The context is the Blackfoot Confederation.
- Small Number and the Skateboard Park: When Small Number has trouble with math, he usually asks his sister for help. But this Sunday he has a geometry problem that looks very difficult, and he decides to ask his cousin, Full Angle, who studies mathematics at the university.
- Small Number and the Kit Foxes: On Blackfoot Confederation land, “moonlight streamed in through the front window and lit up the room where Small Number, his sister Perfect Number, and their cousins were sitting around the fireplace talking about the new pair of kit foxes that had been settled that day near the rocks beside the creek way out by the furthest edge of their grandparents’ ranch.”
- Small Number and the Old Arrowhead: On an ocean beach under the tent, Small Number’s older sister, Perfect Number, pointed to something on the table that looked like a polished stone. “This is a ground slate point. It was probably used as the head of an arrow.” She took the stone and very gently started rotating it in her hand. “Very few people can say that they have held an object that was used by our ancestors thousands of years ago.”
- QUESTION: How can an artifact reveal its age?
- For high school, this could lead to a connection with Wanuskewin Heritage Park in Saskatoon.
- QUESTION: How can an artifact reveal its age?
2Pedagogy – Empowering the Spirit. (nd). Retrieved 4 July 2020, from http://empoweringthespirit.ca/pedagogy/
3University of Toronto. Research guides: Infusing Indigenous Perspectives in K-12 Teaching: Lesson Plans. Retrieved 5 July 2020, from https://guides.library.utoronto.ca/indigenouseducation/lessonplans
4Stocker, D., & CCPA Education Project. (2006). Maththatmatters: A teacher resource linking math and social justice. Ottawa, Ont.: CCPA Education Project.
5Jungic, V., & Maclean, M. (nd). Math Catcher – Simon Fraser University. Retrieved 28 July 2020, from http://www.sfu.ca/mathcatcher.html