Creation Story & Oral History

04nov6:30 PM8:30 PM6:30 PM - 8:30 PM Creation Story & Oral History

Event Details

4-Week Online Speaker Series – Re-occurring every Thursday in November

November 4th, 11th, 18th, 25th, 2021, Time: 6:30pm – 8:30pm

Program Cost: $60.00 (4- week series)

This program is based upon traditional knowledge and oral history of the Anishinaabeg, or otherwise known as the Ojibwe, of Southern Ontario, to demonstrate another side of history. The program has been structured chronologically, in which the creation story and migration teachings are a quintessential basis for the rest of the program to be structured from.

The final product of this program with the participants is a land acknowledgement that is written and produced by the individuals that participate within this program. Land Acknowledgements are typically written down and repeated day-to-day, in which it loses the true meaning. Through having the individuals be able to create their own land acknowledgements through combining what they learn throughout these sessions, and their own general knowledge of the territory in which they reside upon, will demonstrate true learning and they will be able to carry forward this land acknowledgement, whether it be in a professional or personal setting.


Anishinaabewin – the ways of Anishinaabeg is the fundamental structure of how we learn from one another. Throughout this session, parts of the Anishinaabeg Creation Story along with our Migration teaching will be shared, so participants will gain an understanding of how we believe our people were placed here on Turtle Island. As Anishinaabeg, we do not believe that we crossed a land bridge from Asia into the America’s, known as the Bering Strait Theory. Instead, our migration teaching places us near the Atlantic Ocean and has our people migrating westwards down the St. Lawrence and into what we know as present day southern Ontario.

Not only will participants gain an understanding of how Anishinaabeg perceive our world, but they will also learn about our spirituality. Just like the many dominions of Christian faith, Anishinaabeg retain a multitude of spiritual and cultural practices.

After this session, participants will be introduced to Anishinaabeg ways of understanding how our people dispersed throughout Turtle Island, along with the spiritual practices that were given to us by Gzheminidoo (the Big Spirit).

Length – 1.5 hours with 30 minutes for questions


Prior to contact, the Anishinaabeg Nation, had multiple treaties with other Nations throughout Turtle Island. Some of these Nations include the Haudenosaunee Confederacy (Iroquois) and the Omamawi-nini (Huron). Through examining the style and records of these treaties, the participants will gain an understanding of not only how we maintained peace amongst the different Nations of Turtle Island, but also how we shared the land. Throughout the plethora of First Nation languages across Turtle Island, there is not one language family that retains the concept of “owning the land”.

After Champlain ventured throughout some of southern Ontario in 1603, the discourse between settlers and First Nations people was divided. This is what is known today as the Beaver Wars, which divided the First Nations peoples. Once more settlers came into this area, in the late 1700’s; the first of the pre-confederation treaties was introduced throughout this area. Participants will learn about the multiple pre-confederation treaties that were signed throughout southern Ontario, in addition to learning about the treaty that covers Paris, Ontario.

After confederation, in 1867, followed what is known today as the numbered treaties. 11 treaties were signed, which spanned from northern Ontario, all the way to the Northwest and Yukon territories. The numbered treaties did not cover most of eastern Canada, British Columbia, Nunavut, and parts of the Yukon. In 1923, the infamous Williams Treaty was signed throughout southeastern Ontario, which ultimately took away hunting and fishing rights from the signatories to that treaty.

Participants will gain an understanding of the treaty process, and will also familiarize themselves with the local First Nation communities, and how they came to reside where they are today.

Length – 1.5 hours with 30 minutes for questions


Throughout Canada’s history, First Nation people were first treated as distinct Nations. Unfortunately, as history progressed, and after the treaties were signed, assimilation policies came into effect to eradicate the “Indian Problem” that Canada faced. Out of these assimilation policies, such as residential schools, came great anguish and pain for our people.

This session is designed to provide a general overview of the Indian Act system, forced agricultural practices, residential schools, sixties scoop, Indian hospital experimentation, day schools, and to conclude with the biggest challenge that we face today, the child welfare system.

Participants will not only gain an understanding of these events that are people had to endure, but also learn about the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) of Canada, and the 94 calls to action to the Canadian government in order to properly engage within reconciliation. Reconciliation is a word that is often thrown around a lot in order to gain attraction and attention, but true reconciliation starts with the individual. It is what we can do in our time, to learn and heal from one another in order to provide a better future for our children.

There are a lot of misconceptions when it comes to residential schools and day schools, in which participants will learn that these assimilation policies/programs were in effect until 1996 for residential schools, and until 1997 for the Indian day schools. First Nation people are still challenged with the dynamics of the child welfare system to this day, in which case studies will be examined.

Length – 1.5 hours with 30 minutes for questions


Just as it is important to understand our past footsteps and history, it is of outmost importance to learn about contemporary issues, modern treaties, and new challenges that face First Nation people today. In this module, participants will gain an understanding of contemporary issues that triggered national movements, such as the Oka Crisis, Gustafsen Lake Standoff, Ipperwash Crisis, Idle No More, Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, and on-going land disputes.

Through these movements/encounters, policy has been re-written in the professional areas of policing, medical, and children’s aid services. This not only is important to understand an in-depth exploration of these events, but to also learn what we are doing to move forward on a Nation-to-Nation basis. In terms of Nation-to-Nation dialogue, this session will also outline contemporary treaties that have been signed since 1999.

After this one-hour session, participants will be given the chance to read their land acknowledgements if they choose to. This is what we call in Indigenous academia as ensuring our research goes “full-circle”. After the participants have a chance to share their land acknowledgements, we will ensure to have a debrief session, for anyone that may have outlying questions that they would like to ask prior to us ending our sessions.

Length – 1 hour with 30 minutes for land acknowledgements, and 30 minutes for debrief

More Information and Registration Link:


Five Oaks Education and Retreat Centre

519-442-3212 1 Bethel Road Paris Ontario N3L 3E3 Canada

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