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Improving & Expanding Upon My Path of Reconciliation


I will focus on “Improving and Expanding Upon My Path of Reconciliation,” my final project. This effort is the conclusion of the course and my understanding of Indigenous Canadian history. This project connects everything I have learned to my main topic: Indigenous people’s persistence and healing despite colonization and efforts to destroy their beautiful culture. This project seeks to learn about Indigenous peoples in Canada and explore reconciliation methods. This subject resonates with me because reconciliation must be ongoing to repair colonial harm. As a Northern College student, I need to know about Indigenous peoples in Canada and how colonization affected them. This project allows students to reflect on their class learning. It allows me to learn more about Indigenous peoples in Canada and how I can help with reconciliation.

The initiative also aligns with the course aims, which educate students about Indigenous peoples in Canada, colonization, and reconciliation. This article will have six sections. The first portion will introduce the project, its purpose, and its format. The second part will cover Indigenous Canadian history, colonization, and reconciliation. In the third section, we will explore my main idea, problem, and reconciliation steps. In the fourth section of this essay, we will investigate undiscovered learning areas and how new information may have changed existing ideas. The fifth section will discuss critical efforts that may aid learning and understanding, numerous obstacles to reconciliation, and ways to overcome them. The last section will summarize the paper’s main topics, reiterate the project’s importance and potential impact, and advocate for reconciliation and further education.

Background Information

Indigenous peoples lived in Canada for thousands of years before Europeans arrived. Canada has hundreds of Indigenous groups with their languages, cultures, and traditions (Mitchell, 2019). They lived off the land and firmly bonded with it and the environment. European explorers and settlers changed indigenous lives forever. Colonialism took territory, culture, and identity from Indigenous peoples. Indigenous people were displaced when European immigrants arrived to claim and inhabit the land. Indigenous peoples were forced to live on overcrowded, tiny reserves and pressured to embrace Western ways of life. Colonialism forced Indigenous peoples to attend residential schools, which took away their language, culture, and autonomy (Burrage et al., 2021).

Reconciliation entails admitting colonization’s impact and seeking remedies. It seeks reconciliation between Indigenous and non-Indigenous Canadians. Canada is the destination. Reconciliation requires acknowledging colonization’s harm and taking action to repair it. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) investigated residential school abuse in 2008—the TRC’s 94 Calls to Action guide Canada’s reconciliation. Reconciliation helps mend colonization’s harm by acknowledging Indigenous peoples’ suffering. Reconciliation requires devotion, understanding, and respect from all sides as it helps all Canadians build a better future.

Big Idea

My thesis will focus on indigenous languages and reconciliation. Language is so crucial to Indigenous culture and identity that tackling this problem is vital for the class and me. Colonialism caused Indigenous peoples to lose their languages; thus, revitalizing them is crucial to reconciliation. Indigenous languages were vital to their everyday life and culture. These languages were utilized for storytelling, communication, and cultural transmission. However, European colonizers eradicated indigenous languages and forced many indigenous people into residential schools, where they were forbidden to use their native language.

As a result, many Indigenous languages in Canada went extinct, and just a tiny proportion are currently spoken fluently. Revitalizing and preserving Indigenous languages is essential to reconciliation. First, Indigenous languages are crucial to indigenous cultures and identities. To achieve this aim, one must transform their attitude toward indigenous languages from a barrier to discussion to a component of Canada’s cultural heritage. Help Indigenous language revival efforts next. This includes funding language initiatives and resources, promoting Indigenous language use, and supporting language immersion projects.

Indigenous languages must be spoken and heard in schools, government offices, and public events. Giving indigenous peoples a voice requires this. Finally, indigenous peoples must have control over language revival. This involves supporting indigenous communities’ language revival initiatives and letting them determine how to do it. Finally, racial and cultural healing requires the revival of Indigenous languages. Recognizing indigenous languages, supporting language revitalization efforts, and providing indigenous communities the power to drive the process is essential. These steps may help restore Indigenous languages to Canada’s cultural past.

Areas of Learning

I learned a lot about Indigenous history and culture in this lesson. Residential schools and their impact on Native Americans and other indigenous peoples stand out. Learning about the forceful kidnapping of Indigenous children from their families, the violence and neglect in these facilities, and the intergenerational trauma caused by this system was complex but vital for my education. I was unfamiliar with Canada’s rich Indigenous cultures. After studying indigenous peoples’ traditional ceremonies, art, and storytelling, I now respect these issues. This new awareness has made me rethink Indigenous narratives, which has changed my views.

I now understand colonization’s destruction and the need for reconciliation. This new knowledge may aid reconciliation by supporting Indigenous activities and strengthening Indigenous legal rights. This may involve helping Indigenous people revive languages, repatriate artifacts and cultural artifacts, and safeguard land and water. Finally, knowing new things has helped me understand Indigenous history and culture. This new knowledge has changed my perspective. Therefore I am recommitting to education and reconciliation. Educating ourselves and supporting Indigenous-led programming can promote mutual respect, understanding, and reconciliation.

Key Initiatives and Obstacles

Several crucial steps towards reconciliation may aid learning and comprehension. Attending indigenously led cultural events and ceremonies is crucial. This includes attending powwows, smudging, and learning indigenous beliefs and practices. These events help participants understand Indigenous culture and history and build relationships with Indigenous peoples. Supporting Indigenous-led groups and movements is also critical. This includes campaigning for Indigenous rights, revitalizing Indigenous languages, and repatriating Indigenous treasures and cultural objects (Bilodeau, 2023). Supporting the activities below empowers Indigenous peoples and promotes Indigenous rights and culture. However, reconciliation may face obstacles. Institutional racism and prejudice against Indigenous peoples are significant obstacles. Stereotypes, microaggressions, and cultural appropriation are examples.

One must commit to lifelong learning, reflection, institutional transformation, and justice to overcome these problems. False information and ignorance of Indigenous history and culture are further obstacles. This may perpetuate harmful perceptions and ignorance about the ongoing effects of colonialism. To overcome this obstacle, one must show a devotion to the study of information from several reputable and diverse sources and to the advocacy of educational reform that more accurately depicts Indigenous history and culture. Critical self-reflection, genuine information sources, and systemic reform and justice are some ways to address these problems. Admitting and addressing problems may help create a more fair and equal society. Respect, understanding, and healing underpin this society.


This study focused on Canadian Indigenous reconciliation. This essay examined Indigenous peoples in Canada, colonialism, and reconciliation as a way to repair colonial wounds. The article suggests a project idea and outlines dispute resolution procedures. It also examined new areas of knowledge, how new information may have changed previous views, and how it may aid reconciliation efforts in the future. The investigation also found crucial activities that may aid learning and understanding and several impediments to reconciliation. This project’s potential to help Indigenous peoples obtain justice and promote reconciliation must be highlighted. Both aims matter.

Continued education, critical self-reflection, and advocacy for social justice help create a more fair and equitable society. This paper concludes by passionately advocating for reconciliation and admitting colonialism’s enduring effects. If we keep learning and working together, we can only advance toward a society that honors, respects, and celebrates Indigenous contributions. Only then will we be closer to developing a society that accomplishes these things?


Bilodeau, L. (2023). Dreaming of an Eighth Fire Museum Practice: Indigenous voices in the Canadian Museum of History and Te Papa.

Burrage, R. L., Momper, S. L., & Gone, J. P. (2021). Beyond trauma: Decolonizing understandings of loss and healing in the Indian Residential School system of Canada. Journal of Social Issues78(1), 27–52.

Mitchell, T. (2019). Colonial Trauma: Complex, continuous, collective, cumulative, and compounding effects on the health of Indigenous Peoples in Canada and beyond. International Journal of Indigenous Health14(2), 74–94.


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