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Program Five: Medicine Wheel Healing: How We Teach


Learning to teach the Aboriginal way begins with understanding that the teacher is also a learner and the learning is for life, not just the lesson of the day.






  • Videos:
Program Five - "Medicine Wheel: How we Teach"


  • Documents

“Directions in Aboriginal Ministry”
Building Bridges Project/ Newman College, Edmonton Alberta


“The Story of Canadian Aboriginal Spirituality”
Chapter 3, World Religions: A Canadian Catholic Perspective
By Sr. Eva Solomon, CSJ
Novalis Publishing Inc. and Nelson Education Ltd. 2011


"Medicine Wheel: A Method of Reading the Bible"
By +Sylvain Lavoie, OMI
Publisher TBA


“Drumming from Within: Tales of Hope and Faith from Canada's North.”
By +Sylvain Lavoie, OMI
Novalis Publishing Inc. 2009


"Faith Moments: Saint Kateri Tekakwitha"

By Anne Neuberger. Novalis 2009


  • Websites:
Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada (TRC) Click Here


Canadian Bishops on Saint Kateri Click Here


Canadian Bishops on Canadian Indigenous Peoples Click Here


Salt and Light TV video on Saint Kateri Click Here


Jesuits of English Canada on Saint Kateri Click Here


Catholic Missions in Canada Click Here


Saint Kateri Resources
compiled by
Religious Education + Family Life
Renfrew County Catholic School Board Click Here



Study Guide




The goal of Program Five is to deepen students’ understanding of the teachers within the Aborifinal community approach their studnets, beginning with the notion that the teacher is also the student and that what is to be taught is for life, not just the lesson of the day. Reflections from Archbishop Sylvain Lavoie, OMI, Archbishop of Keewatin-Le Pas (2005-2012); Founding Chair, Standing Committee on Aboriginal Affairs, Assembly of Western Catholic Bishops; Rosella Kinoshameg, Odawa First Nation, Member, Aboriginal Council, Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops; Sr. Eva Solomon, CSJ, Ojibway First Nation, Sister of St. Joseph of Sault Ste. Marie, Executive Director, Building Bridges Project; Dan Kingdon, Religious Education Director, Newman Theological Collage; Gladys Malcom, Métis, Elementary school teacher.




1. Show the internet TV video - Program Five: “Medicine Wheel: How We Teach”


2. Ask students to form small groups to describe the following impressions from the video:

  • Who are the Aboriginal speakers speaking in the video and what are their main thoughts?
  • Who are the non-Aboriginal speakers speaking in the video and what are their main thoughts?
  • What did you know after viewing the video that you didn’t know before?
  • Give three reasons why Canadian Catholics should support the work of the Building Bridges Project.
  • From this video, describe a difference between Aboriginal and non-Aboriginal learning and teaching methods and how this might make a difference in how one tries to deepen one’s faith life.


3. Option for Take-Home Assignment

  • Via the Internet find more facts about how culture affects learning and teaching approaches.
  • From the video, how do you think Aboriginal approaches to learning might affect your own.
  • In groups, make presentations to the class about any or all of the above. Include suggestions on how students could find out more about various cultural approaches to learning, in particular Aboriginal approaches.