Syllabus for Yukon First Nations Studies 12 (Autumn 2015)


  • Be on time for every class, with all necessary materials ready.
  • Be polite and respectful to each other, to me, and especially to guests.
  • Take notes, and keep your binder organized and up-to-date.
  • Hand in projects on time.  Late projects will suffer a -20% grade penalty.
  • Produce quality work. In particular, all written assignments must consist of full sentences organized into paragraphs.
  • Study for tests. Students who have unexcused absences on test days will suffer a -20% grade penalty on that test.

Course Schedule

Some of the units we will be doing in this course follow a standard classroom schedule.  Others will be completed over a long time span, or must be done when the seasons permit.  Therefore, the timeline below is subject to change.

  • Indigenous Peoples of the Americas  – 3 weeks
    • Geography of North America
    • Scientific and traditional accounts of the peopling of Yukon and the Americas.  Traditional social structure and land management.
    • Early contact between native and non-native people in the Americas.
  • Land and Culture – 3 weeks (mixed in with Unit 1)
    • We will take advantage of the good weather at the start of the semester to learn experentially about Yukon First Nations use of the land and traditional technology.
    • Arctic Son (an absolutely wonderful documentary for rainy days).
  • The Federal Election – 3 weeks
    • The four “levels” of government in Canada
    • The Canadian parliamentary, electoral, and party systems
    • Election issues of interest to First Nations people
    • First Nations treaties and the Canadian constitution
  •  First Nations Activism and The Umbrella Final Agreement – 3 weeks
    • People and ideas in the struggle to build a more stable and equal society in the Yukon.
    • Together Today for Our Children Tomorrow.
    • Land rights, aboriginal law, and the Umbrella Final Agreement
    • Project: First Nations governments of the Yukon
  • Understanding Systemic Inequality in Canada – 3 weeks
    • The triangle of oppression
    • Colonial Canadian history
    • Blanket activity
    • Current issues in First Nations communities, and community solutions
  • First Nations Art – 2 weeks
    • Printmaking project.
    • First Nations filmmaking.
    • Film review project.
  • Indigenous Hip-Hop – 2 weeks
    • Poetics of hip-hop.
    • Hip-hop as a form of indigenous expression.
    • Rap video and/or analysis project.

 Thinking Skills

  • Critically analyzing historical and political ideas.
  • Identifying and critiquing different viewpoints.
  • Crafting, defending, and deconstructing oral arguments.
  • Managing conflict while discussing sensitive topics.
  • Artistic & creative skills.

Assessment & Evaluation

You can see the schedule of due dates on the calendar at  You can add this calendar to your device by copying and pasting the following iCal link:

  • Final Exam: 20%
  • Unit Tests: 20%
  • Projects: 40%
  • Participation (including homework completion): 20%