Posted: January 28, 2020
The ASD-N Spirit Bear family tree grew last week when Ms. Beaven and Mrs. Bourque's class from Terry Fox Elementary welcomed a Spirit Bear into their classroom. Students worked with Elder Stephen Peter-Paul from Pabineau First Nation to name the bear and as part of the ceremony students had a feast of salmon. There was special signifigance to this particular bear because it is the first female bear in the family tree. Students narrowed down potential names after some group discussion and decided to name her Honey Berry which in Mi'kmaq would be Sismoqnapu Minijk. The students were joined by some honoured guests which included Superintendent Mark Donovan. He was so impressed by the program that he would like more Spirit Bears added to the family tree throughout the school district. Spirit Bear adds an Indigenous perspective into the classroom while learning valuable social emotional skills. Mrs. Bourque shared that this was the best program she has been involved with in her 38 years of teaching. The positive changes she has observed in her students has been phenomenal. A huge thank you and appreciation goes to First Nation Education Lead Patricia Miller for integrating and developing the Spirit Bear program in ASD-N.