Reach Ahead Program
The Reach Ahead Program provides the grade 8 students with the opportunity to participate in the Reach Ahead program, done in participation with the High School and our Land Based Instructors. Students have the opportunity to go out on the land every Wednesday to learn outdoors skills, receive traditional and cultural teaching and, of course, get a high school credit! Students have had the opportunity this month to learn about safe equipment handling, bush clearing, outdoor structure building and fire stating. This includes skills such as batoning (creating kindling with a knife and baton), creating fires for warmth/cooking in wet conditions and stripping logs to build their structures. This is a great program and has offered up an amazing learning opportunity to everyone involved
Connection to the 5R’s
All five of these are met with this program. Relationships will be formed within the school board and between the school board and the community, as we reach out to them for their guidance and expertise. Respect for the culture is seen in every aspect of the program. It will be taught from a Anishinaabek perspective, using Anishinaabe methods and tools whenever possible. This program will demonstrate our responsibility to deliver relevant material to the students and will hopefully teach them to be responsible with the gifts of the earth. Finally, we demonstrate reciprocity by both taking knowledge from Elders and others within the community, and by giving back with the fruits of our labour.
Benefits to students, staff and parents/guardians
The benefits to students are many. First, they will, upon successful completion of the program, earn a high school credit by the time they graduate from grade 8. They will also be learning about their culture and heritage. They will learn to do things that are new to them. They will be outside, doing physical activities far more than they will sitting in a classroom. For staff, they will be able to see the benefits of offering courses in a way and time that is not their usual way. Every teacher who is involved in the program will learn new things along with the students. Parents will see the benefits of their children learning in the culture, being excited about learning, and they will be able to delve deeper into meanings and/or customs with their children.