August 18, 2022

Tools for Incorporating Indigenous Language in your Classroom

Sharing our Gifts sessions are an important part of Teach For Canada’s Summer Enrichment Program. This year’s sessions brought First Nations Elders and Knowledge Keepers together with the 2022 Teacher Cohort to share lessons, teachings, and knowledge with educators, as they prepare to fill roles in northern First Nation schools.



What participants are saying about the Summer Enrichment Program Sharing Our Gifts sessions:

“That Ojibwe lesson was awesome–I loved connecting words. As you begin to expand your vocabulary, you start to see some of the patterns that connect phrases, and it’s really neat.”



The 2022 Summer Enrichment Program offered a total of three Sharing Our Gifts sessions, which included storytelling and a beading lesson. In addition to Sharing Our Gifts, teachers also participate in language courses, where they have the opportunity to learn Ojibwe, Oji-Cree, and Cree from First Nations community members.



Languages spoken in the First Nations that Teach For Canada serves



Anishinaabemowin & OjibweBig Grassy River First Nation
Cat Lake First Nation
Eabametoong First Nation
Lac La Croix First Nation
Lac Seul First Nation
Marten Falls First Nation
Ojibways of Onigaming First Nation
Pikangikum First Nation
Poplar Hill First Nation
Sagkeeng First Nation
Slate Falls Nation
Oji-CreeBearskin Lake First Nation
Deer Lake First Nation
Kitchenuhmaykoosib Inninuwug
St. Theresa Point First Nation
North Spirit Lake First Nation
Sachigo Lake First Nation
Sandy Lake First Nation
Lac Seul First Nation
Red Sucker Lake First Nation
DenesųłįnéNorthlands Denesųłįné First Nation
Swampy CreeFort Severn First Nation
God's Lake Narrows First Nation
Rocky CreeNisichawayasihk Cree Nation



Incorporating Indigenous languages is an important part of culturally responsive teaching. While Teach For Canada acknowledges that it is always best for educators to defer to the school’s language teacher, or bring local language speakers into their classrooms, beginning to understand some words themselves is a great first step.

The following resource list was created to supplement virtual Sharing Our Gifts Language Lessons, and encourage educators to continue their own learning beyond the two-week program.

Check out the resources below to familiarize yourself with the languages used across the First Nations that Teach For Canada serves.



Anishinaabemowin & Ojibwe


Online ResourcesMa Mawi Wi Chi Itata Centre Ojibwe and Cree DictionaryAnimal Bingo Cards (Cat Lake Dialect)
AppsKOBE Learn Ojibway (Google Play)
Cat Lake Ojibway Flashcards
Videos7000 Languages Transparent Language Learning





Online Resources7000 Languages Transparent Language Learning
AppsKOBE Learn Oji-Cree (Google Play) (iOs)
VideosWord Wednesday (Anisininew Isikkeesiwaywin/Island Lake Dialect) with Lyle Wood





Online Resources7000 Languages Transparent Language Learning
AppsLearn Cold Lake First Nations Denesųłįné
Clearwater River Dene Language
VideosMonths in Dene



Swampy Cree


Online Resources7000 Languages Transparent Language Learning
Fort Severn Cree Dictionary
AppsKOBE Learn Cree (Google Play)



Rocky Cree


AppsPrism Interactive Story and accompanying Teachers Guide by William Dumas (Culture and Language Program Coordinator in Nisichawayasihk Cree Nation)




Teach For Canada’s Summer Enrichment Program is a two-week educator preparation program, led by Indigenous leaders, northern teachers, and education experts. The program prepares teachers to fill roles in northern First Nation schools. 

2022 marks the third year that the cornerstone program has been fully digitized in response to COVID-19. From 2015-2019, the program was held in-person at Lakehead University in Thunder Bay.

Learn more about the Summer Enrichment Program here.