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Lord Nelson revives the fur trade

March 29, 2021
Lord Nelson Voyageur WEB

Lord Nelson School students experienced a day in the life of a voyageur.

On Feb. 26, Grades 5 and 6 students participated in a day of outdoor and indoor educational activities at Lord Nelson in celebration of the Festival du Voyageur.

According to Grades 5/6 teachers Mitchell Ferriera, Christina Miladinovic and Eunah Lee, the event served to enhance student learning about those involved in the fur trade, including Indigenous peoples, Métis, European explorers, coureur des bois and voyageurs.

"We wanted the students to have a first-hand experience of what their lives would have been like through various activities."

"We were very lucky to receive funding through the French Cultural Activities grant. It helped us plan for this exciting event. We had fiddlers Bruce and Brendan Chartrand join us in the morning to perform Métis jigging music. They were kind enough to invite Ashton Bouchie who performed the Red River Jig to show the students the unique footsteps of jigging."

During the day, students rotated through such activities as snowshoeing, sack racing, tobogganing, sack racing, hoop and stick, maple syrup eating, sash keychain weaving, clay carving and jigging.  

"It was the most rewarding learning day of the year filled with laughter, new experiences and inclusivity."

• • •

Also on March 4 and 5, Lord Nelson held winter fun days to take advantage of the warm winter weather.

On March 4, Grades 1 and 2 students participated in a variety of outdoor activities. According to Lord Nelson principal Sandy Stevenson, the crowd favourite was a marshmallow roasting station.

The students have been studying Winter in Canada in class, learning about Canadian winter traditions and how animals take care of themselves during the cold season.

On March 5, Grade 3 students participated in tug of war, storytelling and sledding. The afternoon was spent learning a Métis jig, which included five fancy steps.

Students also roasted marshmallows and hot dogs and capped off the day with a spirited sack race.

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