IDENTIFYING THE CULTURAL ESSENTIAL LEARNING (CELS) USED BY CREE TEACHERS IN LITERACY CLASSES IN PUBLIC SCHOOLS OF SASKATOON
Previous researchers in the education field have studied First Nations values and traditions as a means of incorporating First Nations heritage into Canadian education. Pedagogies and lesson plans developed for First Nations students provide ways of integrating their cultures in schools. Nevertheless, only a few studies have researched how elementary First Nations teachers who instruct literacy classes comprehend and develop First Nations values and traditions in their classrooms. Thus, the purpose of the current research is to understand how Cree teachers from elementary schools who instruct literacy classes in Saskatoon, where is located in the treaty six territory, integrate and promote elements from Cultural Essential Learnings (CELs). Moreover, this research study includes other Cree traditions and values that those teachers also develop on their lessons plans in order to work with their students. Seeking to increase the body of knowledge within this field, this program of study is guided by the following lines of inquiry: (a) what examples of First Nations Cultural Essential Learnings appear in the repertories of four Cree teachers who instruct literacy classes in an urban school setting? (b) are there other elements of Cree values and culture that emerge in their teaching? This study is framed by a generic qualitative research within a constructivist framework. Semi-structured interviews with elementary Cree teachers were used to collect the data, and thematic analysis was used to interpret the data. Purposeful sampling was used to recruit four self-declared First Nations elementary literacy teachers in Saskatoon. The results of this research study showed that these participants incorporate Cree values and traditions in their lesson plans. The teachers that participated in this study embrace the tipi teachings from the Cree culture, which are in part related to CELs, as well as other cultural information to foster Indigenous cultures and traditions in their classrooms.
Cree teachers, Cultural Essential Learnings, Culturally sustaining/revitalizing pedagogy
Master of Education (M.Ed.)
Educational Psychology and Special Education
School and Counselling Psychology