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Traditional values alive within G.R. Davis school

karsen and chelsie

Grade 6 students Karsen Black Water and Chelsie Harris were at the Dec. 11 meeting of Livingstone Range School Board to talk about the seven traditional teachings and how they are used at G.R. Davis school.

G.R. Davis school has found a way to combine the seven habits of highly effective people with the seven traditional teachings of First Nations people.
Grade 6 students Karsen Black Water and Chelsie Harris, student teacher Jaden Cullen, recently-retired native liaison counsellor Vera Crowshoe, and principal Richard Feller visited Livingstone Range School Board Dec. 11 to talk about the seven traditional teachings.
Karsen explained students had learned about the seven habits of highly effective people, and Chelsie said they tried to integrate those seven habits with the seven traditional teachings.
The seven teachings each have an animal associated with them. They are: love, with the eagle; respect, with the buffalo; courage, with the bear; honesty, with the dog; wisdom, with the beaver; humility, with the wolf; and truth, with the white buffalo and the sun.
Crow Shoe said the seven teachings took two years to develop.
“When I took the training for seven habits, I knew there was a connection,” Crow Shoe said.
Feller then introduced Cullen who he said has done a great job of taking the seven traditional teachings and linking them to the health curriculum.
Cullen explained she had each student create a flap book with a flap dedicated to each of the seven teachings.
The first lesson was on the eagle and love. Cullen had students create a pictograph of their own, after they studied the drawings at Writing-on-Stone Provincial Park.
Each student also had to write a compliment on each other’s flap.
“Every kid felt so good that day, they felt the love in the classroom,” Cullen said.
The second lesson was respect and the buffalo, where students did an “I respect” chart.
The third lesson was courage, and students completed an “Are you a person of courage?” survey. They discussed what courage meant in daily life, and talked about peer pressure.
The fourth lesson was honesty. Cullen showed them a clip from Pinocchio to start, and what happened to him when he was not honest. She moved to a simple game of “Who has the paper clip” in which honesty plays a big part.
The fifth lesson was humility, a word many students had never heard. Cullen used a mind map to discuss the concept.
The sixth lesson was wisdom. Students are creating their own comic strips, and are currently working on them.
The seventh lesson is truth, and Cullen plans on using the “Boy who cried wolf” and a native story to compare the two and their use of the concept of truth.
“It’s been a really neat experience to infuse (the seven teachings) in the health program,” Cullen said.
Cullen also created a resource for teachers to use in the future.
Feller wrapped up the presentation by showing a video illustrating how the seven teachings are used in the school.
“These values are things that are alive in our school,” Feller said

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