#STEM; #AamjiwnaangFirstNation; #SixNationsofTheGrandRiver; #DougDokis; indigenousland-basedknowledge; #ChrisdelaTorre
Ottawa, Jul 17 (Canadian-Media): A summer camp that teaches science, technology, engineering and math -- also known as STEM -- from an Indigenous perspective is being attended by the high school students from Aamjiwnaang First Nation and Six Nations of The Grand River, media reports said.
A 15-day course taking place at the Six Nations Polytechnic campus in Ohsweken, Ontario, known as Gaǫdewayęhstaˀ Ohwęjagehka:ˀ (Learning on the Land) is one of five similar camps in Ontario organized by Actua, a national organization dedicated to promoting STEM among youth.
Actua. Image credit: Facebook page
"It's part of our national program to reach out to Indigenous communities and youth ... and introduce them to STEM," said Doug Dokis, senior advisor for Actua's national InSTEM program.
"It's to take them on the land and help them to recognize and identify with ... Indigenous land-based knowledge and connecting [it with STEM]."
The message behind a new outdoor summer camp happening this week for students from Six Nations and the Aamjiwnaang First Nation is that Science, technology, engineering and math doesn't just happen in classrooms and labs.
The organization ran a pilot camp last year and this year is an official launch.
During the course, students are connected with local knowledge-keepers and elders and receive a high school credit for participation in the camp.
Dokis had just visited a sister camp organized by Actua in Akwesasne, a Mohawk nation on both banks of the St. Lawrence River.
He told Afternoon Drive host Chris dela Torre about how students there caught and dissected sturgeon and were instructed by a knowledge-keeper about how the spinal cord of the fish is used to make traditional lacrosse sticks.
"Kids learn better when they're involved directly with experiences on the land," Dokis said.
"Indigenous communities and people have always known this, so we've been ... developing these programs in as many communities across the country as we can."
(Reporting by Asha Bajaj)