EduBlogging for Indigenous Learners
The living tree is a metaphor for the cyclical process of lifelong learning. There are four parts: sources and domains of knowledge (roots), individual learning cycle (rings), individual personal development (branches) and community well-being (leaves).
Learners draw upon a rich heritage of values, beliefs, traditions and practices that balance and harmonize relations between members (living and deceased) of community, promote family relations and aboriginal language learning, and preserve cultural traditions.
1. Write a letter acknowledging our teachers, mentors, learning companions, and Elders;
2. Explain your personal learning webs as they existed five years ago, as they exist today, and as they might possibly exist five years from now;
3. Describe how our reciprocal relationships to others are important to personal happiness, and the happiness of others;
Both aboriginal and Western ways of knowing are complementary. There are 4 dimensions of personal development: spiritual, emotional, physical, and mental (intellectual). Learning is an integrative process, incorporating both formal and informal learning experiences.
A goal of education is facilitating transmission of intergenerational knowledge to individual learners from family members, community members, and Elders. Each new generation is taught to assume responsibility for survival of future generations, seven generations into the future.
4. Ask a family member to tell a story of challenge and success; record this story, requesting your story-teller to give feedback;
5. Recount a story of your own involving a family or community member that led to a positive result;
6. Interview an expert about any topic about the future, and listen to what this person has to say, and try to describe it in this person’s words as closely as possible;
Individuals learn to balance spiritual, physical, mental, and emotional dimensions of their being. Emotional: self-esteem, ability to acknowledge personal gifts; Mental: critical thinking, visioning and dreaming, storytelling, use of heritage language
7. Introduce others to vocabulary of your heritage language;
8. Explain something about your culture;
9. Describe a vision, or dream, which has had an impact on you;
10. Reflect on an event you found uncomfortable, recount as much detail as possible, then switch your role, and have a conversation with your younger self, providing reassurance and support.
Leaves: clusters into four branches of collective well-being – cultural, social, political, and economic. Rejuvenation, replenishment, reformation, relationships are the core components for nurturing and maintaining community well-being.
Individual and the community are part of interconnected web of life. Interdependence and reciprocal relations based on trust and shared values are crucial to maintaining cycle of learning for individual tree (learner) in a forest of trees (community).
11. Ask for an interview with an Elder or member of the community about their challenges as a lifelong learner, and share this story with others; reflect on your own impressions to their life-story.
12. Prepare a “time capsule” using images, videos, music, and poems or other forms of writing, for archiving for future generations;