Squamish Nation Governance
TopicSquamish Nation Governance
Essential QuestionWho benefits from the different forms of governance and decision-making?
Learning Standards Content
Students are expected to know:
- different systems of government
Students are expected to be able to do:
- use inquiry processes and skills to — ask questions; gather, interpret, and analyze ideas; and communicate findings and decisions.
I can share my learning about governance structures through discussion.
I can think critically about court decisions.
I value generational roles in a community and reflect on my own community and identity.
First People's Principles of LearningLearning involves generational roles and responsibilities.
- Show 5-minute video The Elders Are Watching.
- Have students use a Think, Pair, Share strategy to discuss the following questions:
- “What did you notice about the story?”
- “How did the story make you feel?”
- “What is the message of the story?”
- “What connections can you make?”
- “Who watches over Canada?” (government)
- “What is the role of the government?”
- Invite students to go for a silent walk (outside if possible) to reflect on the story.
- Have students write a reflection in their journals.
- Journal: Why do we have governments? What do they do? What different types of government exist?
Part 1: Getting to know the Squamish Nation
- Play the Squamish Nation Welcome Song. Ask: “How does the song make you feel?”
- Use a Jigsaw strategy to have students explore the Squamish Nation website. Divide students into 4 groups and assign each group one of these 4 sections of the “About Us” tab of the website: The Nation Today, Our History, Our Land, Our Culture. Have each student record their findings on the handout “Facts/Wonders/Images”.
- Put students into mixed groups to share their Facts/Wonders/Images.
Part 2: Government Symbols
- Project or print the carving on page 2 of the Squamish Nation Council Governance Policy Document.
- Discuss the image and quotation: “The Skwxwú7mesh Úxwumixw will protect the Amalgamation and enhance the Úxwumixw cultural values and traditions through respect, equality and harmony for all”
- Cut out 12 symbolic aspects of the carving. Put students into 12 small groups of 2 or 3 and hand out one symbol to each group. Have groups research their assigned Squamish Nation Animal Symbols. Have each group create a statement about how their symbol relates to government.
- Have whole class form a circle (outdoors if possible) and share their statements about their animal symbols and government.
Part 3: Connection to Elders
- Play the opening 2:16 minutes of Squamish Chief Ian Campbell’s speech
- Tell students that they will be interviewing a family member or friend about a story of one of their elders. Have students create interview questions and then conduct the interview for homework over the next few days.
- Have whole class form a circle (outdoors if possible) and share the stories from their interviews.
- Discuss the fact that learning involves generational roles and responsibilities.
Part 4: The Indian Act
- Show the 1 minute 22 second video The Indian Act
- Brainstorm: “What do you notice, wonder, feel”
- Ask: “How might the Indian Act affect the daily lives of the people of the Squamish Nation?”
Part 5: Case Study: Squamish Nation vs. Ministry of Fisheries and Oceans
- Discuss the fact that access to resources can be a source of conflict.
- Provide students with paper or digital copies of article Squamish First Nation’s Bid for More Sockeye Fails in Court
- Ask: “How do you feel? What makes you feel that way? Do you feel the court decision was fair?” Have students respond using a Think, Pair, Share strategy.
- Explain the if people feel that a court’s decision is unfair, they can take it to a Court of Appeal.
- Provide students with paper or digital copies of article about Court of Appeal decision
- Have students create a statement that represents their feelings and thoughts about the appeal process.
- Exit Ticket: “What do you know about the Squamish Nation. What questions do you still have?”
Canada. 2012. “The Learning Circle: Classroom Activities on First Nations in Canada, Ages 12 to 14.” Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada. https://www.aadnc-aandc.gc.ca/DAM/DAM-INTER-HQ/STAGING/texte-text/ach_lr_ks_lc1214_1331134340172_eng.pdf
Centre for First Nation Governance. 2013. “Best Practices: Squamish & Lil’wat First Nations: Principle: Inter-Governmental Relations.”
National Centre for First Nations Governance. 2009. “Governance Best Practices Report.”
North Vancouver Museum & Archives. 2018/19. “Squamish Community: Our People and Places: Teacher’s Package.”
Squamish Nation. 2020 “Governance Documents.”
Squamish Nation. 2018. “Governance Policy.”
Squamish Nation. [n.d.] “Project, Negotiation & Development.”
SQUAMISH NATION SKWXWÚ7MESH ÚXWUMIXW. [n.d.] “Our Mandate, Our Service, Our People, Our Connections.”
Squamish Nation Council. 2019. “Memorandum Regarding Squamish Nation’s Governance: Structure, Designated Council Representatives and Communications Protocol.”