On the Road: Trips to Partner Communities
It is shaping up to be a really exciting year for our team. We have had the opportunity to work with some amazing educators across Canada. We’ve also been able to document knowledge, capture stories, and build some phenomenal educational content that they can use in their classrooms. Our team made frequent trips over the past few months, visiting schools and helping educators get comfortable using Learning Bird with their learners.
Our Team’s Recent Trips
We wanted to share details from our latest trips. We’ve asked three team members to document their most recent experiences. These trips span coasts, from BC to Nova Scotia, reflecting how we work with different First Nations.
Kelsey Catherine – Kitsegukla, BC
I am Kelsey Catherine. My role as Community Outreach Lead at Learning Bird involves working with schools to find the best digital resources and programs for their needs. I have spent a lot of time doing onsite training and content collection with schools this past year. Earlier this month, I had the opportunity to travel to the community of Kitsegukla in British Columbia.
My visit at the Gitsegukla Elementary School with Ms. Ryan’s Grade 6-7 class was at the same time as a local scientist who was teaching the class about the regional bee populations. Did you know that there are over 600 species of bees in British Columbia alone? The number of bees integral to the berries and vegetables they grow and pick amazed learners. I spent half the day working alongside this class to create bee nests they can place near their new garden in the spring.
Learning Bird will be creating science and sustainability lessons to help support the learners and Ms. Ryan. These resources will support lessons around their class garden and encourage sustainable practices throughout the school and community. Unfortunately, it was still too cold and icy for a bee hunt outside, but the ice didn’t stop learners from having lots of fun sliding while I visited.
I look forward to our return visit in May, where learners will walk around to highlight important species and wildlife that impact their new garden.
Roxanne – St. Theresa Point, MB
My name is Roxanne Desforges, and I am the Delivery Manager at Learning Bird. My goal is to ensure that our training and workshops positively impact teaching and learning. Most recently, I had the pleasure of visiting St. Theresa Point Middle School and High School in Manitoba. I spent a full day at each school, getting to know the administrators, educators, and Elders who volunteer at the school.
I had a great time visiting the community and made a few friends along the way. Matthew, the High School ICT educator, taught me a very important lesson about why it’s important to model technology accessible to learners. Harvey, the ICT educator at the Middle School, is an amazing photographer. Check out his beautiful pictures of nature on Instagram. I also enjoyed staying with Moyra, an ELA educator. We are creating resources on one of my favourite books from my school days, Tuck Everlasting. She and I made a wolf friend on our walk to school together.
Lastly, I also had the great pleasure of meeting Ian, the Vice-Principal. He picked me up from the airport, gave me a tour of his community, and shared one of his hopes for next year with me: To document the stories of Elders. Projects and visits like these are so fun to be a part of.
Rebecca – Potlotek First Nation, NS
My name is Rebecca, and I am an Education Account Lead at Learning Bird. It’s my job to ensure that educators and administrators feel supported while beginning to use Learning Bird in their classrooms. This month, Roxanne and I had the wonderful opportunity to explore Potlotek First Nation in Nova Scotia. We spent two fantastic days getting to know the educators and members of the community.
This trip worked out in a very interesting way. We planned to spend one day at Mi’kmawey Middle School and a second day at Allan Lafford High School. However, a blizzard hit right when we arrived and cancelled our day at the middle school. When it cleared up a bit, we decided to talk with some people who knew a lot about the community and culture of Potlotek First Nation. We met up with Terry Denny, and we had a long conversation about language, culture, history, and education. We left in the evening feeling humbled by Terry’s knowledge and with lots to think about!
The next day dawned bright and clear, and we went to see the high school as scheduled. We spent the day with high school educators, exploring the Learning Bird platform. We discussed how it would work best for them and discovered many new ideas together. Finally, before we left, we met up with Terry again to drive down to the shore to see Chapel Island, which plays an important part in Potlotek’s history and culture. He spoke to us more about the island and its history while we snapped a few pictures.
These visits are just three recent trips by our team. We will be sharing more of our experiences and stories as we move forward in partnering with more schools. If you are interested in learning more about our Indigenous Digital Education Initiative or would like to see samples of the content we’ve collaboratively built, please get in touch with us.