Learning More about Residential Schools

This week we are looking at the Residential School system in Canada. These government-mandated, religious schools are one of the most devastating systems of colonial injustice in our history. They were formed as an attempt to aggressively assimilate Indigenous children to Euro-Canadian culture and Christian beliefs. The last Residential school did not close until 1996 and the traumatic legacy of these schools continues to significantly impact Indigenous families and communities across Canada.

Click on the resources to watch and read more about the experiences of the Indigenous People in the Residential School system in Canada.

We were children | NFB
In this feature film, the profound impact of the Canadian government’s residential school system is conveyed through the eyes of two children who were forced to face hardships beyond their years. Watch it on Amazon Prime!

Stolen Children: Residential School Survivors Tell Their Stories | CBC
Stolen Children explores the impact of residential schools on former students and their children and grandchildren. Survivors share their harrowing experiences and discuss the legacy of fear, abuse and suicide being passed down from generation to generation.

Book for kids: “When We Were Alone” by David Robertson
David Robertson #Reads2CHEO: When we were alone or order it here: When We Were Alone


What was the aim of the residential schools in Canada? What are the initial and long-term effects of this type of traumatic colonialism on Indigenous communities? 



Unsettling the Settler Within – Indian Residential Schools, Truth Telling, and Reconciliation in Canada, By Paulette Regan

For teens: Fatty Legs Webinar Series & Resources


Where Are The Children

10 Books about Truth and Reconciliation to Read with Your Kids


Indigenous authors list/additional movies list 

NFB films about: Indigenous Peoples in Canada (First Nations and Métis) & Residential Schools

108 Indigenous Writers to Read

#IndigenousReads by Indigenous Writers: A Children’s Reading List

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