Fraser Wood SD#36 Surrey

I. General Information

School Name: Fraser Wood

School District: SD#36 Surrey

Inquiry Team Members:
Team leader: Elana Miller <>
Our fabulous team: Heidi De Groot <>; Azita Sauder <>; Anne Mcnamee <>; Dawne Edwards <>

Inquiry Team Contact Email:

II. Inquiry Project Information

Type of Inquiry: NOIIE Case Study

Grade Levels Addressed Through Inquiry: Primary (K-3), Intermediate (4-7)

Curricular Areas Addressed: Arts Education, Career Education, Language Arts – Oral Language, Language Arts – Reading, Science, Social Studies

Focus Addressed: Indigenous understandings (for example, Traditional Knowledge, oral history, reconciliation), Community-based learning, Core competencies (for example, critical thinking, communication, problem solving), Experiential learning, First Peoples Principles of Learning, Growth mindset, Inquiry-based learning, Land, Nature or Place-based learning, Social and emotional learning

In one sentence, what was your focus for the year? Educating staff and students about Indigenous Peoples. We accomplished this through monthly bulletin boards put together by a student team/club (inquiry-based) that included our Indigenous students and was led by staff on a monthly basis. We would meet weekly. We also had an Indigenous adult committee that would meet and talk about what we wanted to do in the classroom and educate other staff.

III. Spirals of Inquiry Details

Scanning: During the scanning process, we made sure that each student felt cared for and that they enjoyed school. We only had a few students and all of them were pretty keen.

Focus: We accomplished more than I could even imagine was possible. Our adult and student team were stellar!!! The bulletin boards and books beside them were outstanding! The Indigenous Student Team did phenomenal jobs of presenting those bulletin boards to many of the classes each month. I even wrote an article about it for the STA. Our adult team did a book study of Ensouling Our Schools and implemented Spirit Buddies. They also did the multiple intelligences surveys, which were both highly effective. We did some school-wide activities like planting a heart garden for Truth and Reconciliation Day and made a legacy project of a rock medicine wheel for National Indigenous Day. We made talking sticks as classes, and I gave a Pro-D on Indigenous Outdoor Ed (Place-based Learning) to staff.

Hunch: At the beginning, the students did not know much about their culture. Thanks to all the efforts of both teams, those students have a stronger sense of identity and pride.

New Professional Learning: I think as a group, we all supported each other. As stated in our focus, we learned from our meetings (each other), Pro-D, books, researching for the bulletin boards and everyone reading and presenting from the bulletin boards.

Taking Action: As I stated in our focus, everything we did was highly visible, from the heart garden to the bulletin boards and from classroom lessons to Pro-Ds. By the end of the year everyone knew about our committees and their work.

Photo description: Tweet from the Caring Society

Checking: I think we made a huge difference, especially with the bulletin boards and the presentations of them, as well as acknowledging and involving the Indigenous students. We also did large scale activities for the Indigenous Days and the week in residence. I couldn’t imagine doing much more, but there’s always more work to be done.

Reflections/Advice: I was new this year to Fraser Wood, but not new to the position of Indigenous Lead Teacher. I had never accomplished so much in the role. The team we had was so inspirational and filled with passion and great ideas. I’m hoping that next year we have an even greater presence in the school, if that is possible, and address more issues.