Interactive Elementary School Programs

Objects, questions and discussion are key components of the elementary school programs.  Students are introduced to the history and cultures of BC’s Northwest Coast First Peoples through objects, media, and group-based activities.  In the programs, students are exposed to Aboriginal perspectives and understandings. (See also our Secondary School ProgramsTeaching Kits and Temporary School Programs.)

To book, contact or 604.822.3825.

Unique Educational Experiences

kwakwaka’wakw potlatch

This program was developed in collaboration with Kwakwaka’wakw Chief Robert Joseph. Through short films, narratives and objects such as masks, regalia and a talking stick, Chief Joseph’s perspectives on this ongoing cultural ceremony are shared with participants. Students are exposed to the sights, sounds, and ceremony of the Kwakwaka’wakw potlatch and develop an understanding and respect for this tradition.

the pole walk

Students explore a variety of monumental carvings by Northwest Coast First Peoples.  Through observation, students learn to identify First People’s crests images carved on the poles.  Students tour the Great Hall, the outdoor poles and visit the Haida House on the Museum’s grounds.  By being exposed to historic and contemporary poles, students gain a deeper understanding of the ongoing significance of these masterworks. Ensure your students are dressed appropriately for the weather.

cedar: the tree of life

This program highlights the continuing importance of the cedar tree among First Peoples of the Northwest Coast. Students develop their observational skills and learn about First Peoples’ culture through hands-on activities with objects made from cedar. Students actively question how objects are made, how they are used, and what contemporary significance they have.

archaeology of the lower fraser river

Be an archaeologist for a day! Discover the rich, 9,000 year history of the First Nations people in south western BC by learning about their lifeways, tools and technologies. This behind-the-scenes program includes an introduction to authentic tools and materials used including the use of cedar bark for rope making. Students have a chance to make a rope bracelet from raffia using these techniques.

Teaching Kits

MOA offers Teaching Kits for use in the classroom. These kits combine objects, resources, community histories and offer multiple approaches across disciplines.  The resource rich kits act as supplemental teaching material or can be a comprehensive unit of study for Social Studies, Art, History, and First Nations Studies.

Teachers must pick up and drop off Teaching Kits at the Museum reception desk. 15-day loans: $40; 30-day loans: $75 (includes taxes).

My Ancestors are Still Dancing Kit

Grades K-12. This kit approaches Tsimshian history and traditions by highlighting Chilkat weaving. William White offers his perspective as a weaver on the processes and cultural value of woven works. Included are touchable samples of the weaving materials and Chilkat weavings at various stages of completion made by this well-known Tsimshian weaver. To complement these objects, the kit includes a range of historic and contemporary photos, a Teacher's Guide, sourcebook, and the documentary video Gwishalaayt : The Spirit That Wraps Around You.

Nunavut Kit

Grades 4-6. This kit introduces students to the Inuit people of Nunavut through exploration of a variety of touchable objects. Focusing on the formation of the territory, kit resources demonstrate the vitality of Inuit life today. Included are various touchable objects (snow goggles, oil lamp, harpoon, bag of bones, etc), a teacher’s guide, maps, and extra resource materials such as the Nunatsiaq News, a weekly newspaper from the north.

Residential School Kit

Grades 10-12. This kit approaches the difficult history of Indian Residential Schools in Canada. It is designed to develop students’ research and presentation skills while they learn about the history and ongoing impact of Indian Residential Schools. Students are exposed to survivor poetry, personal narratives and historical photographs as they come to understand this troubled history. The kit was developed in conjunction with the Residential School Survivor Society, the Legacy of Hope Foundation, and the Aboriginal Healing Foundation.