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PWSD students celebrate FNMI culture ahead of National Aboriginal Day

Lots of schools in the Peace Wapiti School Division are celebrating National Aboriginal Day this month.

The official day is normally celebrated on June 21, but that tends to conflict with exam week.

PWSD First Nations, Metis, and Inuit Coordinator Darrel Willier says each school celebrates differently.

“Sometimes it could be things such as Aboriginal arts and crafts day where they could make dream catchers, bracelets, or earrings. Sometimes we’ll have Metis dancers or First Nations dancers come in and perform their dances, or they might have stew and bannock day for lunch.”

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Clairmont Community School is hosting celebrations open to the public this evening from 6-8.

Grovedale school is having Stew and Bannock lunch for staff and students on Thursday, and students at Hythe Regional school will have presentations from elders in the community next week.

Willier says National Aboriginal Day is a learning experience for students of all backgrounds.

“They get to learn a little bit more about the culture. If it’s Metis dancing, how it’s different from First Nations dancing. Simple terms like regalia, we don’t wear costumes when we’re performing, it’s called regalia. So that’s some of the benefits of learning about the culture.”

Robert W Zahara in Sexsmith hosted a whole week of Aboriginal Day celebrations last month. Their festivities wrapped up with a round dance on May 30.

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