"Tales of pioneer hardship and deprivation have been told many times. Yet still we remember in wonder, that people accomplished so much with so little; that men and women with simple tools, their bare hands, and their own inventiveness cleared the land, drained the swamps, made their own clothing and provided their own food. Through all these difficulties God was with them and they wanted their children educated intellectually and spritually." from Norfolk Street United Church history

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Facing History and Ourselves creates a new educational resource on Canadian Aboriginal languages

TORONTO, June 21, 2012 /Canada NewsWire/ - Facing History and Ourselves is creating an educational resource for teachers and students that explores the effects of lost and endangered languages on aboriginal identity, culture, and community. This guide will help young people understand the impact of individual choices in building an inclusive society and empower them to be active, ethical citizens in their schools and communities.

The resource, which will be developed over the next three years, will weave together a series of readings, including primary sources, testimonies, interviews, literary excerpts, essays, articles, photographs, paintings, and other media. A research and review team including aboriginal scholars will help shape the themes and messages and review chapters for accuracy and context. The goal of the guide is to increase an understanding of history, heighten awareness of Canadian aboriginal languages, and provide a framework for thoughtful conversations about identity and language.

Facing History has been awarded a grant of $45,000 from TD Bank Group to create this important resource. The three-year grant supports Facing History's mission of engaging youth in important civic education and promoting social and ethical awareness, as well as TD's effort to make a lasting difference in the community.

"This will be Facing History's first resource guide specific to Canadian history. We are grateful for this grant from TD," said Facing History Director, Leora Schaefer. "This is an important topic that will resonate with educators and students. We look forward to seeing the impact the book will have when young people discuss the themes raised within its pages."

"TD is proud to partner with Facing History on developing this important resource and contributing to the terrific work they do," said Domenic Natale, Vice President, Aboriginal Trust Services, TD Bank Group. "We embrace this opportunity to encourage dialogue in the classroom so students can better understand our history to make better, more informed choices today for a brighter future."

Facing History is thrilled to announce this grant on National Aboriginal Day. Formally established in 1996, National Aboriginal Day is a time for all Canadians to recognize the diverse cultures and outstanding contributions of First Nations, Intuit, and M├ętis peoples. Facing History's new resource will similarly generate awareness among youth—particularly non-aboriginal youth—about aboriginal lives and languages with the goal of creating a more informed and humane citizenry.

Visit facinghistory.org/offices/toronto to learn more about Facing History's work in Canada.

About Facing History and Ourselves

Facing History and Ourselves is an international educational and professional development organization whose mission is to engage students of diverse backgrounds in an examination of racism, prejudice, and antisemitism in order to promote the development of a more humane and informed citizenry. By studying the historical development of the Holocaust and other examples of genocide and mass violence, students make the essential connection between history and the moral choices they confront in their own lives

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