Kitkooli-1998-First Nation’s Outdoor Classroom-Double Iron Farm-Salmon Arm, BC


Glen Jollymore and John Sayers facilitated the building of these traditional structures, integrated with teachings and tasks associated with creating this First Nation’s 12 outdoor classroom-integrating place based learning, an interpretive center into the high school curriculum in salmon arm senior secondary. i was privileged to be able to be apprenticed to these amazing mentors, and invited as the only non-native youth in the first year of creating the interpretive center. lately i’ve been put in a similar position, to teach natural crafts and techniques to draw youth into connection with the urban wilds of toronto. as i try and frame what behavior and cuture was so subtly taught to me when i was 15, in order to pass on the benefit of this knowledge, i have an expanded sense of respect and gratitude for glen and john, and the center they created on the property of double iron ranch, near Salmon Arm, b.c.

huh, i just remembered that Glen passed on a film of russian teens hearing songs and stories with first nations youth at the interpretive center (i will edit and upload the film next month). The project has grown to include these kinds of healthy cross cultural sharing ceremonies, and it feels very much like a spiritual center, or pilgrimage site, for my work in toronto, running strong in an oddly normal small town in bc.

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