Asec 2019

Beyond the 94.

What now?

Thursday, October 24, 2019
10:00 AM - 12:30 PM

Keynote Speaker: Allen Sutherland - Canadian Indigenous Historical Timeline – Beyond 94

Allen Sutherland / Waabiskhi Mazinishin Mishtadim (White Spotted Horse), Anishinaabek Saulteaux member of Skownan First Nation (Treaty 2 Territory) and of the Bizhiw Doodem (Lynx Clan). 

As a member of the Indigenous Community, Allen had the opportunity of working within Indigenous, Federal and Provincial Governments, including grassroots community work for over 30 years. Allen provides facilitation and training under his own company of WHITE SPOTTED HORSE, Inc, where he is a sought-after resources person on the history and cultures of Indigenous Nations of Canada.  

Allen is presently a member of the Speakers Bureau of the Treaty Relationships Commission of Manitoba and is currently employed as the Life Long Learning Lodge-Keeper of Treaty 2 Territory Government. 

Allen will share a look at Indigenous World View within the Canadian History, before, during and after treaty making – looking at reconciliation today and beyond.

Thursday Full Afternoon Sessions
1:15 PM - 4:00 PM

AB1: Métis Art Workshop: Dot Art Painting

Have you been seeking out grade 12 credit options at your centre that allow students to practice other kinds of skills and modes of thinking to balance out the heavy class discussion, readings, and deskwork that dominate most mature student diploma schedules? The Louis Riel Institute Adult Learning Centre is now in its third year of offering the grade 12 Métis Art course it developed. While participants are led through the creation of their own Métis dot art painting, this workshop will hit the bullet points of how to develop an art program generally and an Indigenous art course specifically. Topics will run from budget to training to administrative details (including the complicated course code list) along with whatever other questions participants may think of during the full afternoon session. All materials are provided. 

Krista Reimer

Krista currently teaches high school math, Métis art, career development at Louis Riel Institute Adult Learning Centre and Stevenson-Britannia Adult Learning Centre. Over the past six years, she has taught a variety of courses, including high school math, English, art, career development, and English as an Additional Language for international students. 

Thursday Early Afternoon Sessions
1:15 PM - 12:30 PM

A2: Protocols for Working with Elders & Ceremonies

This session will aim to be a one-stop shop for how to engage with traditional Indigenous resources correctly and respectfully, including how to work with Elders and knowledge-keepers, as well as how to approach ceremony. Specific topics will include basic protocols for inviting and hosting Elders, how to participate in, lead, or facilitate the logistics of a smudge or other ceremony, possible pitfalls, and recommended sources of information when you aren’t sure how to proceed. There are no dumb questions—if there are dumb questions, though, better to ask them here and now.

Rita Emerson-Misling

Rita is the Education Director of the University College of the North Adult Learning Centre, a long-time Indigenous educator and leader, and a member of the ASEC BoardShe is an advocate for the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action and for the use of traditional knowledge to support youth and schools. 

A3: Elections Canada: Engage. Empower. Learn.

Whether you’re teaching citizenship, history, geography, math, politics, or another subject, Elections Canada’s new inquiry-based resources can promote student-centred learning. These teacher-tested tools provide rich content that is linked to curricula in every province and territory. Come discover them!

Joseph Péloquin-Hopfner

Joseph is an Education coordinator with Elections Canada. He is leading a pilot project in Manitoba that is set to empower teachers with free, dynamic, curricula connected educational resources focused on Democracy, Civic Engagement and Elections.

More information about this initiative can be found on the website: or by contacting him directly: 

A4: Literacy in the Criminal Justice System

Focusing on the mission, vision and practice of the John Howard Society and the Literacy Department, this session will discuss the causes and consequences of crime, the overrepresentation of Indigenous peoples in the Canadian justice system, and the importance of literacy at the JHSM. The presenters will outline how the JHSM is working with learners to integrate the TRC Calls to Action and the positive effects of literacy programming, both on inmates but also benefits for the community.

Joel Simkin & Amanda Fyfe

Joel Simkin has a BA from the State University of New York and an M.A. and M.Phil in linguistics from the City University of New York. Joel has over twenty years of experience teaching courses in English as a Second Language, reading, writing and speaking. He has taught at the City University of New York, the University of Winnipeg, the University of Manitoba and Tokyo Kasei University in Japan, as well as colleges and private language schools in Montreal and Bonn, Germany. He has been the literacy instructor with the John Howard Society of Manitoba since May, 2019. 


Amanda Fyfe has a BA (Hons) in History from the University of Ottawa, an MA in History from the University of Winnipeg, and a BEd from the Université de Saint-Boniface. A believer in lifelong learning, Amanda has worked in archaeology in Ontario, as a teacher in Manitoba, and volunteered for over two years at the Winnipeg Remand Centre as a tutor for the John Howard Society of Manitoba’s Literacy Department before becoming Literacy Coordinator at the JHSM in July, 2019. 

A5: Indigenous Perspectives in the Sciences

This will be a brainstorming session on how traditional Indigenous knowledge, pedagogy, and issues can be used to more effectively teach and make relevant the learning outcomes in our science curricula. This session is for teachers of general science, topics in science, physics, biology, and chemistry, as well as psychology. Teachers of courses like Gr. 12 Current Topics in First Nations, Métis, and Inuit Studies and other issue-based courses (social studies and ELA, perhaps) may also find some of the ideas shared in this session relevant to their teaching. 

While Joel will have a number of shareable resources, workshop participants are invited to bring copies of their own assignments, resources, and lesson plans to talk about and share at the session if possible. Electronic files can be emailed in advance to or brought on USB the day of. Joel will combine all shared resources in an online folder alongside his own files to send out to participants after the session. 

Joel Boyce

Joel Boyce is the director of the Louis Riel Institute Adult Learning Centre, which runs out of the Manitoba Metis Federation’s Home Office, and a member of the ASEC Board. He was worked in both adult and Indigenous education for most of his educational career and worked on a number of projects related to curriculum development. Joel is currently responsible for teaching all science subjects at LRI ALC and has led workshops on Indigenous perspectives in the sciences several times before. 

A6: Art as Therapy

The session focuses on art – the process of creating a thing from within, and the freedom of release as means of healing from trauma. This session uses art, particularly the art of Creative Writing as a tool. The session will encourage participants to connect to their stories, and to one another through activities that they can also use beyond here. The session will help participants move to an understanding of how their childhood and upbringing has shaped their worldview, and hopefully act as a means of helping others further understand their life choices and patterns.

The session will have 2 writing exercises – one on home, and its connection to our senses and another, a free-writing exercise on connection & storytelling. These exercises will focus deeply on our ability to remember and the impact of shared storytelling on reconciliation.

Olivia Onuk

Olivia Onuk is a Writer, Counsellor, Event Planner, and Domestic Violence advocate. Much of her work is about connecting people to their stories, and to one another as her writing connects her to her own. Olivia holds a degree in Family Violence & Conflict Resolution, and is the Co-Chair of the Suicide Prevention Implementation Network. She worked for 2 years as the Child & Youth Counsellor at the YWCA Westman Women’s Shelter in Brandon, Manitoba. Psychological principles along with art, talk, and play therapy techniques were used in counsel with child & youth victims of Domestic Violence. Olivia is passionate about the human desire to create, and believes in the use of art as a tool for making sense of trauma. 

Thursday Late Afternoon Sessions
2:45 PM - 4:00 PM

B7: Directors' Discussion: The Learning Conversations Protocol

For Directors and Program Coordinators only. Please bring your pressing issues from your centre and/or program, and we will dig deep to help you find solutions by using the Learning Conversations Protocol.

Anne Grossman

Anne is currently in her 8th year as Director at Adult Education Centre, and she is working on completing her Master’s program in Educational administration.

B8: 60's Scoop

In his session, Bradford will share his personal story of survival from the 60’s Scoop. He will share the hardships he faced at home as a young child, the journey to finding himself and how he is sharing his truth with his children.

Bradford Bilodeau

Bradford Bilodeau is an Indigenous male from the 60’s Scoop.

Taken from his birth family at age 2, he lived in foster care until age 5. He was adopted into a white French family along with 3 other 60’s scoop children. Bradford lived his life not knowing who he is or anything about his background. He finally found his family in 2004.

He has shared his story in Vancouver, Toronto, Boston and Winnipeg.

B9: I Really Want Romance…Not Just a Hook Up

Building long term relationships requires some basics, some truths, some cuddles and some quarrels. Like any relationship there must be equity and risk taking. Let’s build a real relationship and not just hook up! Using the Harvard University experiment.

In this session, we will explore what teaching and learning looks like beyond the posters on the wall and the Indigenous poetry unit. It isn’t about the curriculum or what we use for resources. It is about listening, empathizing and getting in the moment and supporting the learning. We won’t always get it right because we are often the learners. How do we negotiate a relationship starting where our learners are starting from? Our relationships won’t be equal because we want them to be. In an era of much talk about Reconciliation, it is more important than ever that we recognize that we need to do the work of sitting in uncomfortable seats to begin to understand what the relationship needs to be. Either a hook up or a long-term friendship.

Olivia McCorriston

Olivia McCorriston has been an adult educator for over 25 years…administration and back to the classroom.  She is a Metis teacher, leader and champion for the Indigenous learners, of any age.  She has worked in the education field, both within the Indigenous Community and the mainstream education community in many different roles:  classroom teacher, Program Coordinator, Project Manager, Director, Principal, University Educator and Dean. She has worked tirelessly to bring many projects to successful fruition, while ensuring that Indigenous values guide the development and implementation.  Today, Olivia continues to support alternative program options to meet the needs of Indigenous learners, both as a University Instructor working in northern Manitoba with Faculty of Education students but also as the Education Development Specialist for Shawenim Abinoojii Inc.

B10: Mindfulness for Well-Being

This experiential session introduces participants to mindfulness and offers strategies to promote overall well-being. Mindfulness is about intentionally paying attention to the present moment with an attitude of curiosity. By focusing on the present, one tends to worry less about the past and the future. A regular mindful practice has many benefits and can help manage stress, increase focus and improve overall health and wellbeing.

Mireille Saurette

Mireille provides academic support for student success at Assiniboine Community College (ACC).  She completed an MA in Counselling Psychology.  Her passion for mindfulness is strong.  She has taken part in a dozen 8-week MBSR courses.  Having completed a 9-day Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction (MBSR) Fundamentals course, she now delivers mindfulness initiatives at ACC.  Mireille has over 12 years experience in education (elementary, secondary, and college).

B11: mino pimātisīwin (good life)

In nēhinawēwin, the history, teachings, and the worldview of the inino contained within the words. As an oral language, this ensures the continuation of the culture from one generation to the next. The Elders are telling us that we cannot just translate our language into English; we have to look more closely in order to understand our ininīwin.  In this session, we will examine concepts of family, child raising and community based on words in nēhinawēwin; concepts that give us an insight into our understanding of mino pimātisīwin

Ron Cook

Ron Cook was a fisherman on Lake Winnipeg for 15 years and lived a traditional lifestyle with his wife and five daughters. In 1992, his interest in his first language (nehinawewin) inspired him to enter BUNTEP when they offered a B. Ed program for Native Language teachers, graduating in 1997 with greatest distinction. He taught Nehinawewin at Grand Rapids School for 5 years before moving to Thompson to teach at Wapanohk Community School. He then moved into the Cree Language/Aboriginal Perspectives Coordinator position with the School District of Mystery Lake, a position he held for 10 years.  He is currently the curriculum consultant for the Centre for Aboriginal Language and Culture at the University College of the North.

N1: Crafts, Conversation and Connecting

Join us for a Creative Networking Session filled with fun crafts and activities as well as the opportunity to expand your network in the adult literacy and adult learning field.

This is a Make and Take session where you will have the opportunity to make a bunch of cool crafts and to laugh and chat with old and new friends.  These are activities that we can use to connect, to de-stress, and to re-centre ourselves and all are activities that you may choose to share with your students. 

Choose to make a willow dreamcatcher, with willow from northern Manitoba, or learn the art of Métis beading supported by the Manitoba Metis Federation Beading Group.  Or, choose to make a cute set of thank you cards or a funky Christmas Ornament. 

Bring your little black book.  Bring your own skill, craft or activity to share or demo.  Just come and enjoy great company, good snacks and the opportunity to grow in relationship and community.

 Limited supplies available.  Register early to reserve your spot.

Friday, October 25, 2019
9:15 AM - 12:00 PM

Keynote Speaker: Dr. Niigaan Sinclair

It’s through education and understanding that we begin to understand one another as relatives and proceed on roads towards reconciliation. This workshop will explore the historical experiences and contemporary realities of Indigenous Education in Canada. Specific topics of study include; Indigenous teaching and learning methodologies and pedagogies, treaty education and treaty relationships, a political overview of the history of Indigenous Education in Canada, Residential Schools, teaching for inclusion, and teaching for reconciliation. As educators, we hold the unique opportunity to facilitate the renegotiation of relationships between all cultural groups and empower students to join the process of reconciliation in Canada. In this workshop, educators will be lead through the process of visioning how reconciliation might look in the classroom and come away with an action plan on how to implement Indigenous education in their classrooms.

Niigaanwewidam James Sinclair is Anishinaabe (St. Peter’s/Little Peguis) and an Associate Professor at the University of Manitoba. He is an award-winning writer, editor and activist named byMonocle Magazine as one of “Canada’s Top 20 Most Influential People. He is a regular commentator on Indigenous issues on CTV, CBC, and APTN and was named the 2018 Canadian columnist of the year at the National Newspaper Awards for his bi-weekly columns in The Winnipeg Free Press. His other written work can be found in the pages of newspapers like The Guardian and online with CBC Books: Canada Writes. His first book on Anishinaabeg literary traditions will be coming out with the University of Minnesota Press in 2019. He has also written national curriculums in Indigenous education for Indspire, the former National Aboriginal Achievement Foundation, and the Assembly of First Nations.

Friday Full Afternoon Sessions
1:00 PM - 3:30 PM

CD17: Métis Art Workshop: Metis Beading

This full afternoon activity will keep participants busy learning and using Métis beadwork practices while learning about the history and meaning of this Red River craft tradition. Participants will produce an iconic Métis beadwork flower which can be made into a pin.

Nancy Gouliquer

Nancy is a Métis artisan with a passion for community, Métis culture and history. She connects to her French-Métis roots through teaching, volunteering and storytelling. Nancy likes to pass on traditional skills like capote-making, moccasin and mukluk sewing, hide prepping, historic bag constructing, birch-bark collection and use, and Métis beading and porcupine quilling. As an elder and knowledge-keeper, Nancy is involved in the Métis community as a mentor, volunteer, and workshop facilitator. 

CD18: A Connection with the Past: Engaging with TRC Records in the Classroom

This session will offer a comprehensive overview of the history and legacy of the residential school system in Canada, the work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission and the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation. It will highlight ways and means of engaging with the Calls to Action with students and will identify resources and programs that can assist educators in delivering reconciliation-focused education in the classroom.

The second part of the session will consist of a hands-on activity which will provide an entry point for teachers into the NCTR Archives. Documents held in the NCTR Archive can be used in the classroom to assist students in understanding the effects of residential schools and the residential school experience first-hand by offering a unique glimpse into daily life, experiences and conditions in the schools. Through a guided discussion on truth, reliability and context, participants will have an opportunity to engage with a selection of documents and utilize their critical thinking skills in order to uncover aspects of the story which may not be readily apparent at first. This workshop will provide teachers with the tools and materials to replicate this learning opportunity with their own classrooms with their students.

Sarra Deane​

Sarra Deane is the Education Program Coordinator at the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation (NCTR) where she works to foster reconciliation through educational initiatives. Sarra is responsible for ensuring that the history and legacy of the residential school system and the stories of Residential School Survivors are respectfully placed in the hands of educators. She is a key presenter of the work of the National Centre to educators, students, members of the private sector, and government departments and she coordinates the NCTR’s Imagine Canada initiative, a national youth art and leadership program focused on empowering the voice and vision of youth for reconciliation through art.

CD19: TRCM - Hands-on Classroom Activities

To be confirmed.

Friday Early Afternoon Sessions
1:00 PM - 2:15 PM

C11: Métis Employment and Training - General Q & A Session

Presentation from the Manitoba Métis Federation on the services, funding initiatives, eligibility, partnerships, and eligibility for services that they provide.

Suzanne MacPherson & Andrew Boryskavich

Suzanne is an employment and training counselor in the Métis Employment and Training Department of the Manitoba Métis Federation. She supports Métis, non-status, and Inuit people with job preparation, Career counselling, and educational counselling and funding. 

Andrew is the recruitment coordinator in the Métis Employment and Training Department of the MMF. He oversees client support services, private partnerships such as Manitoba Hydro’s Indigenous Linesmen training program, and job-training initiatives such as It’s My Community Too. 

C12: Mapping Indigenous Issues

Google Maps is a useful tool for finding the nearest gas station or navigating to a dinner party in an unfamiliar neighbourhood.  

You can also use it to make student-generated maps of anything you like. From a single city block to the entire planet, learn how to collect and display information as individual or even collaborative group or whole-class maps.  

Students across the curriculum can be digital map makers, but I’ll focus my examples of how you can present indigenous perspectives and content both graphically and geographically.

Chris Yorke

After a decade teaching junior and senior high school, Chris has been in the adult education world for nearly two years. He currently teaches ELA and Social Studies courses at the Louis Riel Institute Adult Learning Centre. 

C13: Education for Reconciliation - Implementing the Calls to Action

This session will include the role of the Indigenous Inclusion Directorate and the overarching projects and initiatives in Manitoba Education and Training. Relevant resources for educators will be shared as well as what other jurisdictions are doing to advance Reconciliation in the classroom.

Wanda Spence

Wanda is Sagkeeng First Nation, Manitoba. Wanda has worked in the Indigenous education community as liaison, coordinator and facilitator in a wide array of areas including health, aerospace and environmental education for over 20 years. Wanda is herself a life long learner and acknowledges the struggles and barriers faced by adult learners. Today, as Consultant with the Indigenous Inclusion Directorate within Manitoba Education and Training, she works to ensure that Manitoba’s education systems are responsive to Indigenous learners. 

Friday Late Afternoon Sessions
2:30 PM - 3:45 PM

D14: Indigenous Curriculum, Pedagogy and Spaces in inclusive Education

Dr. Nadine Bartlett is the project lead on an ongoing effort to transform the core courses for the University of Manitoba’s Faculty of Education inclusive education speciality. The goal of the project is to bring in Indigenous perspectives, cultural knowledge, and pedagogy to PBDE and B. Ed. courses in the Faculty, to ensure the pre-service and in-service teachers, including those who are transitioning into a resources/special education role, are well-equipped to serve their Indigenous students.

This workshop has two goals. First, we will briefly lay out the history of the (still-ongoing) project, to give some sense of how an institution might approach re-envisioning their programming in this way; whom did we seek out for knowledge, how did we plan for an implement change, what supports did we depend on? Second, as educators working with students with a diverse range of needs and from a diverse range of backgrounds, what kinds of knowledge and skills do classroom teachers, support specialists, and administrators need to have to be able to successfully support student populations including both Indigenous and non-Indigenous students, and both with and without exceptionalities? We’ll try to share at least some of the co-constructed knowledge about meeting the needs of diverse learners that has already come out of this project.

Nadine Bartlett & Joel Boyce

Dr. Nadine Bartlett joined the Department of Educational Administration, Foundations and Psychology in the Faculty of Education as assistant professor in July 2017. Her career as an educator included teaching in urban, rural and northern Indigenous communities. Her research focuses on inclusive, person-centered and strength-based models of support for marginalized children, youth and families. During her doctoral program she was the lead author of an interdepartmental government protocol entitled, Wraparound Protocol for Children and Youth with Severe to Profound Emotional and Behavioural Disorders, published by Healthy Child Manitoba. Nadine is the lead on a current project supported by the Indigenous Initiatives Fund to transform the inclusive education curriculum at the University of Manitoba. 

Joel Boyce is the education director of the Louis Riel Institute Adult Learning Centre, located in the Manitoba Metis Federation Home Office in Winnipeg’s Core and has worked in Indigenous as well as adult education for the majority of his educational career. He currently serves on the Adult Secondary Education Council’s board and has presented in the past at conferences put on by the Council for Indigenous Education in Manitoba, Aboriginal Circle of Educators, ASEC, and the Aboriginal Education Research Forum. Joel is also a part-time research assistant on the project Nadine is leading. 

D15: Keeping Your Classroom Library Relevant

Keeping a classroom library current and relevant is an ongoing concern for educators. Come together with your peers for a ‘show and share’ reflecting on the challenge of maintaining a library diverse in perspectives, identities, voices, genres, and formats, while keeping the content appropriate and interesting for our students.

When should we keep ‘the classics’ or opt for more contemporary works? Where can we find affordable resources? What do we do with work by authors whose credibility or authenticity have come into question? How can we find resources that authentically represent a culture or voice that is different from our own?

Please feel free to bring some of your favourite resources along with your questions and ideas for how to achieve a relevant classroom collection. Everything from fiction and non-fiction, prose and poetry, books and graphic novels, magazines and websites, songwriting and storytelling, video and audio productions are welcome and appreciated. We’ll compile and distribute a list of our collective suggestions after the session.

Amy Stefanson

Amy is an English nerd who gets really excited about literature. She is an ALP Coordinator at Adult Education Centre and a resource teacher at WSD Adult EAL program. She’s also currently a member of the ASEC board and is participating in a project to develop EAL curriculum for an Indigenous Perspectives Toolkit for newcomers to Canada with IPW.

D16: Building a History Together

We will share our step by step thoughts on building understanding between training and adult learners and work.

Our focus includes recruitment, retention, developing the training and partnership, and working together to make it successful.

The workshop intends to open a discussion and collect different experiences about these relationships and also to provide educators with some tools that can aid in providing tools to better approach immigrants and first nation students, Therefore, cooperate to eliminate prejudgment and racism from our classrooms.

Barbara Bowen, Kimberly Ballantyne & Olivia McCorriston

Barb and Olivia have been working together on Indigenous employment and training projects for over 20 years. The process of identifying the needs of industry and the culture of aerospace and then preparing industry and indigenous people to work together is a relationship. First, we need to learn about each other, we need to take risks, have difficult conversations, walk away and trust that the relationship we built is strong enough to keep us trying together. Our relationship started as a work relationship and has become more. We are colleagues and friends. This too work on both sides. We will outline how to create these relationships that last decades.

"Education got us into this mess and education will get us out."

Senator Murray Sinclair, Chief Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission