A New Chapter Begins On Land-based Learning…


“Let’s sing a song!” The children from 4B (2018-2019) chanted on the bus ride to the school, clearly excited about a full day, not in the classroom, but in the Culture Camp — located about a 20-min drive away from the school.

“Let’s create a new song today,” Ms Norma Bear chimed back while also steering the school bus down winding but well-ploughed snow-roads.

This marks the first of many ‘Land-based Learning’ Days to take place in our newly constructed Culture Camp. In a way, a ‘new song’ too.

Ms Norma Bear, together with Ms Linda McKay (Social Worker) and Lorraine Bear (Community School Coordinator), led the class into the camp and delivered them to the good hands of Mr Clarence Merasty who took up the mantle of teaching the students, albeit in a far bigger classroom — Nature.

Mr Clarence Merasty (above, center), who had lived close to the land for many years, hunting, trapping and fishing, was certainly the right man for the job.

The students were treated to a hands-on experience with setting the net and catching fish the traditional way. (See photogallery above)

Watch the video in the link here for a snapshot on the lesson on casting the net to lure the highly-coveted pickerels and jackfish.

Students also had the time of their lives going on the skidoo and knowing the lay of the land around the village. (see below)

Back in the cabin, they had a warm meal of bannock and sausages before having a cultural lesson on Understanding and Reconciliation — important life-lessons within the context of Northern Communities. (See below gallery)

Mr Clarence Merasty was sharing passionately about the dangers (and also the thrills) of tackling a wolverine. He also made us aware about the need to respect the balance of nature to ensure that wild game (like caribou and moose) will not diminish. Meanwhile Ms Norma Bear took the chance to teach traditional art of native beadwork.

We were so happy to meet with the gentlemen from SaskPower (a major sponsor to this school activity) who dropped by for a visit and we shared our thanks and gratitude.

Some students (see above) even helped with the collection of firewood to keep the camp warm and toasty for the next batches of students in the coming weeks.

Students were so happy but tired at the end of the day. With great reluctance, we left the camp but kept many happy memories behind.

We look forward to more students learning more about land-based learning and we thank all our teachers, administrators, and sponsors for helping us chart a new step forward in education!

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