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Toronto Catholic District School Board

Drama & Music for Elementary Students in Attawapiskat

  

On Sunday, November 18, 2018 BMTM students arrived in Attawapiskat First Nation for a weeklong stay.  Students worked hard with just under 200 local elementary school students each day, implementing Drama and music sessions. From Monday to Thursday, BMTM students were at the elementary school by 8:30 in the morning, and worked with different grades throughout the day.  When the bell rang for the end of each school day, BMTM students stayed behind to host an after-school program that lasted until 5 in the afternoon. 
 
After school, students spent time connecting with members of the community, taking many walks in the frozen streets of Attawapiskat only to be rewarded with many conversations and countless waves and smiles along the way. 
 
On Friday, the BMTM group invited the community to attend a Drama and Music presentation in which the Attawapiskat students showcased what they had learned throughout the week. 
 
Following the showcase, many Attawapiskat students and other members of the community, saddened to see the group go, escorted the BMTM group on their walk to the airport. It was a very emotional farewell with many tears and the promise to reunite sometime in the future. 
 
BMTM teacher and coach Paulo Pereira shared, “One might think that it is the lives of our young Indigenous brothers and sisters that we are changing with the programs we implement there, but trust me when I tell you that the impact is always greater on our own students.  The emotions and the transformations we witnessed in our students this past week is something that cannot be put into words.  The community of Attawapiskat will forever remain in their hearts and the experience will stay with them for the rest of their lives.”
 
Thank you to all who have contributed to the Attawapiskat initiatives for the past two and half years.  You have helped change many lives.  A special thank you to Monica Sousa, the Drama teacher who accompanied us, for always being ready to donate her time and her infinite set of skills.  A special thanks also goes to Frank Pio and Vanessa Pinto from our FNMI Department.  They have been amazing supporters of our initiatives and we hope to continue to count on their support.

 

 

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