Dr. Leisa Desmoulins and Dr. Don McCaskill Receive NIB Trust Fund Grant: Infusing Anishinaabe Pedagogy in Classrooms

Dr. Leisa Desmoulins (Associate Professor, Orillia) and Dr. Don McCaskill (Professor Emeritus, Trent University) have been awarded an NIB Trust Fund Grant for their research project, titled Infusion of Anishinaabe Cultural Ways of Knowing and Doing into Public School Classrooms. 

Their project involves the development of culturally based Anishinaabe pedagogy and curricula, to be created in partnership with Elders, Knowledge holders, and educators from the Simcoe County District School Board and Beausoleil First Nation.

Leisa explains that “this project connects to TRC Calls to Action 62, 63, 64, specifically to develop culturally grounded curricula and resources, support teacher training needs, and ultimately, to build student capacity for intercultural understanding, empathy, and mutual respect that will foster reconciliation.”

Over the next year, Leisa and Don will work with First Nations partners to explore the underlying features of Anishinaabe pedagogy (ways of knowing and doing), to in turn develop a culturally based curriculum for high school students within the Simcoe County District School Board.

“Based on the research into the broader Anishinaabe culturally based curriculum from the Elders and Knowledge holders, we will work with partners to develop local Anishinaabe geography curricula for secondary students, both Indigenous and non-Indigenous students alike,” Leisa says.

The NIB Trust Fund grants support education programs aimed at healing, reconciliation, and knowledge building, to help First Nations and Métis people, organizations, and communities address the long-lasting impacts of the residential school system.

Pictured below: Dr. Dr. Leisa Desmoulins and Dr. Don McCaskill.