PORT HASTINGS: Each October, school communities focus on the history, culture and achievements of the Mi’kmaq community.

This is also an opportune time to reflect on the contributions and traditions of the Mi’kmaq community. The theme of Mi’kmaq History Month 2016 is “Reconciliation and Resilience.”

The following is an excerpt from the provincial Mi’kmaq History Month poster:

“Reconciliation is a big word that means many things to many people, but for most of us, reconciliation means finding ways of connecting to our past and expressing who we are. For some people, reconciliation is learning how to bead, for others it is speaking every day in the Mi’kmaq language, and for still others it is recording and sharing the stories of our families. Ceremonies, practices and protocols that were once outlawed are now being shared and embraced. Traditional knowledge is now once again common practice, leading our communities on journeys of healing and reconciliation. Drawing on inspiration from each other, our families, traditional practices, humour and faith, we honour the teachings of our ancestors, passing on their knowledge to future generations.”

The Strait regional school board encourages students, staff, parents/guardians and community members to share in the celebration of Mi’kmaq History Month 2016 during the month of October and throughout the year.

Throughout the year, and especially in October, teachers in the Strait region incorporate a variety of educational approaches and thought-provoking activities in their classroom instruction in an effort to highlight the connection of the past to today and how this information shapes understanding. In addition, schools organize a number of activities to enhance classroom instruction including guest speakers, site visitations, student research and discussion, performances, sharing of artifacts, to name a few.

The SRSB is very pleased to be launching its Mi`kmaq History Month celebrations at the regular monthly meeting of the board scheduled for Wednesday, October 5 at 7 p.m., at East Antigonish Education Centre/Academy in Monastery. The evening’s festivities will include student performances, presentations and the circulating of the board’s annual poster to highlight those in various roles who support SRSB students and school communities.

There are valuable educational resources on the subject of Mi’kmaq History.  There are a number of on-line resources listed below that will provide information and insight into the contributions of people of Mi’kmaq heritage in Nova Scotia, Canada and the world: Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada; Mi’gmaq/Mi’kmaq Online Talking Dictionary Project; Mi’kmaq History Month; Mi’kmaq Resource Centre-Cape Breton University; Mi’kmaq Rights Initiative-Kwilmu’kw Maw-Klusuaqn; Native Council of Nova Scotia; Nova Scotia Museum; Office of Aboriginal Affairs – Province of Nova Scotia; The Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq; Union of Nova Scotia Indians; and Veterans Affairs Canada.