Anishnaabe View: In Their Own Words
Peter White (pictured at right) is Algoma District School Board’s First
Nation Métis Student Work Study teacher and teacher at Korah Collegiate. Several years ago he created an original
musical presentation that shared the early history of Sault Ste Marie. He presented his work on both sides of the
border and determined that developing his stories and music into something that
could be shared with a wider audience was a logical next step.
To that end, Peter initiated
a partnership between the Algoma District School Board
and Shaw TV Channel 10, to create a brand new series called “The Anishnaabe View: In Their Own Words.”
It began running on Shaw TV Channel 10 on May 4, 2016. The episodes consist of
Anishnaabe elders and leaders speaking to First Nations students in the Ojibway
culture room of East View Public School about the history of First Nations
people in this area.
The origin of the series is a website currently
being developed by the ADSB about the early history of Sault Ste. Marie called “Voices from the Gathering Place.” When
the project was brought to the local First Nations community it became apparent
that even though the website talked about the deep roots of First Nations and
Métis history in this area, their voice and view needed to be heard firsthand
if the story was to be complete.
Content from these episodes will be featured as
film clips on the website and will present the First Nations and Métis
perspective that is an integral part of the Ministry of Education’s 2013 Social
Studies curriculum. One of the exciting discoveries for the website developers
were stories that have survived in the oral tradition which are not found in
the written record such as the battle of Maple Island in the 1600s.
The first episode featured Garden River First
Nations’ elder Willard Pine (pictured below right). Willard is not only an important
leader in his
community but is also part of the historical continuum in this area as he is a
great-great grandchild of Chief Shingwauk who, after working for decades to
obtain a Treaty agreement for Garden River, was one of the Chiefs who signed
the Robinson-Huron Treaty of 1850.
A new episode of “The Anishnaabe View: In Their Own Words” will air each week and
will include other elders and leaders such as Chief Dean Sayers of Batchewana
First Nations, Former Garden River Chief and direct descendant of Chief
Shingwauk Lyle Sayers, local elder and artist Peter Migwans, and Ojibway
language immersion specialist Barb Nolan (pictured right).
Peter shared a portion of one of the latest
episodes and his thoughts on the creation of this series with Trustees at a Committee of the Whole meeting: "When history is experienced as an
exciting adventure that has direct connections to our lives today,
it jumps off the page and into our imagination. I hope that students
will come to realize what a rich and exciting history we have had in this area
and, through the film clips, will enjoy getting to know the
descendants of the First Nation's and Métis leaders who made that
history and continue to live it right here today."
To visit the
website please go to voices.adsb.on.ca. There are many interactive elements to the
site which make it engaging for students of all ages and all sorts of
interesting facts and pieces of history that the community may or may not be
aware of, making it of interest to anyone from Sault Ste. Marie and the