June 21 is National Indigenous Peoples Day in Canada. This is a day to recognize and celebrate the unique heritage, diverse cultures, and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples of Canada. The Canadian Constitution recognizes these three groups as Aboriginal peoples, also known as Indigenous peoples.
Although these groups share many similarities, they each have their own distinct heritage, language, cultural practices, and spiritual beliefs.
Ways to celebrate National Indigenous People’s Day in your classroom
Take some time with your children to learn about the history of the land you live on, including the cultural traditions and languages. Some helpful resources include native-land.ca and whose.land/en.
In the spirit of celebrating the diversity and richness of First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples, you can also discover and support Indigenous artists. Here are some suggestions to get you started:
- Spotify has created a space for Canadian Indigenous music creators. Find it here.
- CBC compiled a list of 12 documentaries about life in Canada.
Books for your classroom to celebrate National Indigenous People’s Day
Crow and Little Bear
Teach your children all about sharing using this book!
The Granddaughter who was Eaten by a Big Fish
Learn what happens to a granddaughter who does not listen in this Cree story.
Claire and her Grandfather
Learn about Indigenous culture with the story of Claire, who is learning about her heritage.
Through Mala’s Eyes
Learn about the history, cultures, and traditions of Inuit through 12-year-old Mala’s story from Salluit, Nunavik.
The Lily Root
Learn about the Ojibway story of a grandfather who helps his grandson see things in a different way.
Check out this article here for additional classroom book recommendations!
HiMama actively continues to seek out Indigenous educators to spotlight, and learn from. HiMama also acknowledges that our head office in Toronto resides on the traditional territory of many nations including the Mississaugas of the Credit, the Anishnabeg, the Chippewa, the Haudenosaunee, and the Wendat peoples, and is now home to many diverse First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples. HiMama also acknowledges that Toronto is covered by Treaty 13 signed with the Mississaugas of the Credit, and the Williams Treaties signed with multiple Mississaugas and Chippewa bands.