Treaty Education

When trying to introduce Aboriginal perspectives into a class it is first important to recognize that although many people may think these different groups are separate, often unrelated when in reality, the history of colonial Canadians and aboriginal Canadians are intertwined and related. Both groups of people have been directly affected by how the groups have interacted with the past. People need to realize that the position they are in is due to the events that happened in the past, and the treaties that were put in place were meant to moderate all people, not just aboriginal peoples. Once the tumultuous past between colonialists and aboriginal peoples has been acknowledged you can understand that the problems that many aboriginal people face should be equally a colonial Canadian problem, since all of us are connected under the treaty and the land that we share, and we should be seen as a united group rather than two different groups of people co-existing with one another. Living on treaty land should be enough for people to realize that these two worlds are not as separate as many people think. Even if there is little to no aboriginal presence in a class or school, we must still acknowledge that the relationships of the past, and the ways of knowing of aboriginal and colonial people contribute to what we know and believe now, and aboriginal stances are often forgotten and ignored when they can be used to help further societal understanding and relationships for all people. We are all treaty people for a few reasons, we reside on treaty land and are largely descendants of the people who created these treaties many years ago. Without the treaties, most people, if not all would be living a very different life to how we are now. The treaties have heavily influenced the path that Canadians have followed for all these years, and have caused aboriginal people to have a much more difficult history in Canada than the settlers that have come after them, and the impact the treaties have had on various aspects of life is something that should not be ignored.

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