April 25, 2023
We held the second Mawitak Wjit Knijannaq Conference this month from April 4th-6th. A blanket exercise was offered the evening before the conference began, which was optional to attend but had a very good turnout. It was the first time many of the participants had a chance to take part in one. Although everyone already knew the history of Indigenous people in North America, it was an emotional experience for some and they appreciated the opportunity to reflect on it together.
Day 1 of the conference began with a keynote address from Jane Meader who kicked off the event with such a peaceful, respectful tone. The agenda for the rest of the day included presentations on regulations and standards, teaching language through music, and duty to report. During the evening, there was music, waltes and snacks for anyone who wanted to get together.
On the second day, there were presentations on the findings from an Elder research project and the ECE cohort at NSCC. To finish off the morning, the participants made a medicine wheel craft.
"From the feedback I have received, it has truly been a great couple of days," said Blaire Gould, Executive Director of Mi'kmaw Kina'matnewey in her closing remarks. "This makes me very proud of the team who put in so much work to make this such a great conference. Miranda, Daisy, and Cindel and Isabel – you did a great job!"
Conferences such as this wouldn't be so successful without all of the educators who were able to join us. Educators don’t often have the time to get together to learn, reflect and network. Especially those who work with our youngest students because their needs are so great and they demand so much of their teachers' time and attention. It is so important that they have the time and opportunity to make those connections to their colleagues, who they can reach out to for support or to share ideas. We are so grateful to their communities for providing the time for them to attend.