Lesson Plan: For Teachers: Support for Aboriginal Self-Government
Generate a class list of all the
things that governments provide for citizens. Have students indicate on the
list which areas are the responsibility of the federal government and which are
the responsibility of the provincial governments.
Then ask: Are there groups of people in Canada that should have their own governments? Which groups? Why do you think they should govern themselves? What is the impact on Canada if certain groups govern themselves? What is the impact on those groups if they govern themselves?
Outline the Opportunity
Have students explore the topic Georges Erasmus: Native Rights Crusader
on the CBC Digitial Archives website, specifically the clips referring to
native self-government. As they explore, students should make notes of any
ideas suggested for possible resolutions to the issue of native self-government.
Ask students to form small groups. In each group, students will share the information they have gathered about native self-government. Students will explain which ideas they, personally, think should be undertaken to resolve the issue. Each group will then choose one issue that they think will work and prepare to present it to the class.
Revisit and Reflect
Bring all the groups together. Have
each group present the proposal it thinks is the best path to resolving the
issue of native self-government, supporting their response with details from
As a class, discuss the students' ideas and agree on a class proposal that would satisfy both aboriginals and non-aboriginals. As they discuss the proposals, they should explain the reasons why the proposals would or would not be satisfactory to both groups.
After the class has put together its ideas about aboriginal self-government, have them send the class proposal to their local MP and MLA (MNA).
The class can write a letter to Georges Erasmus. The letter should show support for aboriginal self-governance and outline the class proposal and why students think it is an effective one. If you wish, you can send the letter and request a response to the students' ideas.Download PDF