Aboriginal Language and Culture Based Education

The goal of Aboriginal Language and Culture Based Education (ALCBE) is to provide all NWT students with a school experience that is rooted in the culture of the Aboriginal peoples of their community. This includes supporting school programs and learning environments that reflect and promote the values, world views and language(s) of the community’s cultures.

Aboriginal language and culture school programming helps students learn an Aboriginal language (ex. Tłįchǫ, Slavey, Gwich’in, etc.). It also integrates Aboriginal culture right into the school environment.  This programming is meant to be at the heart of NWT schools so that Aboriginal students can develop understanding and pride in who they are and where they come from, and so all students can appreciate the place and people where they live. Aside from Aboriginal language classes, this area includes a range of experiences such as: on-the-land activities (berry picking, fishing, trapping, etc.), Aboriginal art (beading, print making, moose hair tufting, etc.), preparation of traditional foods like bannock and dried meat, exploration of Aboriginal legends and Dene laws, and learning drumming, dancing and Dene games and traditional sports.

The current work of Education Renewal in this area focuses on developing Aboriginal language curriculum. It also focuses on Aboriginal Language teacher training, as many Aboriginal language teachers in the NWT are nearing retirement.

  • In the South Slave region, Education Renewal is supporting a pilot/trial program where experienced language teachers mentor their replacements over time directly in the classroom.

  • In the Dehcho region, all Aboriginal languages teachers and their school principals are learning the neurolinguistic approach to language learning and teaching. Watch the video below to learn more.

**The Neurolinguistic Approach for Effective Language Teaching** 

  • Sharing promising practices is important so we can all learn from each other. Watch the video below to see how Kalemi Dene School is encouraging all staff and the whole school to learn the language.

**Making Language Revitalization a Whole School Project** 

  • In the years to come, Education Renewal will be reviewing Teacher Cultural Orientation programming, and renewing the ALCBE directive.