Materials required: watercolours, paint brushes, large white paper roll, books and materials, whiteboard, a copy of this unit on the Teacher Website (based on a lesson by — Tricia Moskal)
Explain to students what sovereignty and self-determination are by using the quote from Alexander Denny. Discuss the importance of self-government. How do you think you need to feel about your own identity and your place in the community to feel that you belong? Use the Peskotomuhkati Nation efforts as an example. Make sure to indicate on the map that the Passamaquoddy First Nation includes communities in both Canada and the United States. The discussion will be easier for the students if they answer the following questions as a group:
- Using Denny’s quote, what is the definition of self-determination for Wabanaki people?
- Using the Elders’ suggestions, what are the major things to consider in self-determination?
- What are the obstacles to self-determination?
- How can we (both Wabanaki and settler together) achieve self-determination in the future?
The students will be able to paint or draw a specific event, story or person from this Grade 5 resource Ah, the Truth. What is Our Truth? by using the knowledge they have gained through this resource on Treaty Education.
Motivation/Background: Divide the class into four groups and assign each of the Elders’ recommendations to one group. Ask students to close their eyes while you read out the Elders’ Recommendations for Self-Determination. Suggest to the students that they may want to say something about self-determination through designing a series of large posters that can be posted in the hall of the school.
As each group is listening, ask if they could think about what things they would draw to express self-determination, remembering all the things that they have learned in this unit.
- Gather the responses from the students and place them on the whiteboard under the headings: communities, forgiveness, ways out of the barriers/issues facing Wabanaki, promoting your own sovereignty (or independence for yourself or your First Nation). Tell them that they can choose an event, story, or person from any of the previous lessons and select whatever affected them the most.
- The students, in their groups, will look through the resources or choose something from their prior knowledge (anything from previous lessons).
- Ask the students to use as much creativity with this assignment as possible. They may work individually within the group or may work with others.
- Once they choose their subject, they will gather the necessary images and work on the assignment. The teacher can project any illustrations from this resource on the whiteboard to assist them.
Check for Understanding: After giving the students some time to think about their assignment, ask what each student has chosen and help those who haven’t decided yet.
Team Practice: The students will think, pair and share ideas with each other. They will work in small groups while painting.
Independent Assignment: The students will write one paragraph explaining what they painted and how it relates to the idea of self-determination (what they can do) or sovereignty (how they will show that they are independent). Post this under their portion of the mural.
Adaptations for Individual Needs: Help direct these students and show them how to use the books and materials to begin their assignment.
Lesson Evaluation: The students will explain their mural and read their paragraph to the class. All murals will be posted in the hall. The teacher will write the four headings of the mural at the top of each section.