I would like to thank the Coast Salish people, specifically the Skwxwú7mesh Nation and Tsleil-Waututh Nation, whose unceded traditional territory the North Vancouver School District resides on. I value the opportunity to learn, share and grow on this traditional territory.
Click here to listen to a greeting in Halkomelem provide by Whonnock (Dennis Thomas) from the Tsleil Waututh Nation.
Once upon a time, when families were embedded in healthy, inter-connected communities, all adults and Elders were the teachers. The classrooms were the forests where teachings of Mother Earth, the plants, the trees, the waters were shared. History and values were taught through legends. Children were taught how to live, how to feed their families, make their tools and be generous to each other.
Education was experiential and relevant. Education was life-long, it was passed on from generation to generation, and mastery had intrinsic value. Everyone had a gift to share with the community which increased each person’s sense of belonging. Stories were told through welcome poles. The language, culture and art were inter-mingled, not taught in isolation.