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News Item

Backstory: cree word of the week

January 04, 2023

Story of cree word of the week - Jan 2023.png
By Anthony Nickel, Maple Creek Composite School Teacher

MCCS and Chinook School Division launched a “cree word of the week” initiative in the fall of 2022. Every week, a cree word, meaning and annunciation is shared in a variety of ways with students, staff and families at schools around the division. The idea for the cree word of the week came from a few different areas. Predominantly, it is a way for me to culturally get back in touch with the Indigenous side of my family. My mom’s side is cree, but I wasn’t raised culturally as a cree person. So when I was given the role of First Nations/Métis education at MCCS, I became immediately drawn to the idea of using language as a form of reconnection. Secondly, in the developing relationship between Chinook School Division and Nekaneet Cree Nation and the work done around inclusion of Indigenous students, language was one of the identifying factors in helping with inclusion. 

Further, I have noticed companies and parks around the province (Cameco and Fort Walsh, for example) feature similar language connections and felt that one within the school division would be a nice feature. Lastly, it is my hope that these words have started lively conversations around supper tables on language and its vital importance to culture, any culture. I want to thank the division for supporting this initiative!

© Chinook School Division 2014

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