Nadeeka Obada Lekamlage
My research project addresses possibilities and advantages of incorporating Indigenous knowledge into high school science to teach in a Northern Saskatchewan high school.
Indigenous knowledge framework is a noble instrument to inspire students liking science and promote choosing job categories in the essential job and demanding science-related occupations in Northern Canada. Therefore, more researchers are required to find out how educators can intervene to bring up the expectations and achievements of children in Northern communities. In my research, I observed potential topics, units, and strategies to incorporate First Nations way of living in nature to high school science. I further observed the importance of self-reflections, feedback from students, bringing stewardship worldview of Indigenous people through the eyes of Elders and Knowledge Keepers to teach science for sustainable lifestyle.
“Two-eyed seeing” can guide children to become responsible citizens in the future world. It is important to think beyond the classroom with the collaboration of the community to face present realities of environmental changes.
The research helped me to improve my personal worldview and to grow as a responsible and accountable science teacher for my students. Every implication of the plan was a challenge and “learning by doing” moment. We have found that the students feel included and respected by incorporating First Nations way of living in high school science. Students became comfortable in walking between two worlds of knowledge or two-eyed seeing with a gratitude of their identity. Students were proud of their ancestors by knowing how expert and practical they were on the land.
I am grateful to the McDowell Foundation for providing me this space to grow as a new immigrant, teacher, and a researcher. The foundation provides not just funds but guidance, freedom, and confidence to become lifelong learners in education.