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The Métis Abstract

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  • Video from YouTube: Quebec History 23 – Métis North West Resistance

  • Maps of Saskatchewan

  • Posters of Louis Riel, and Gabriel Dumont

Adaptive Dimension:

- Students can investigate the weapons that were used at the Battle of Batoche.


  • This assessment will be done in form of a review. Questions will be asked from the entire unit about the history of the Métis people up until this point.

  • What is… ? Red River Cart? Pemmican, Jigging? Fur trade? Sash? Why trade furs? How did Métis people make money? What did Métis People eat? Where did they live? Why? What is the Manitoba Act? Who was Louis Riel? Gabriel Dumont? Why was the Canadian Government mad?


- Developing thinking

- Geographic literacy

- Developing social responsibility

- Developing identity and interdependence
Prerequisite Learnings:

  • Reasons for Métis unrest

  • Reasons for Canadian Government to be mad

  • Understanding of some Saskatchewan Geography

Lesson Preparation:

  • Choose the pictures of Louis Riel and Gabriel Dumont

  • Prepare the computer and video projector to show the students.

  • Find some artwork that depicts the Battle of Batoche



- Start the class with a summary from the unit so far. Ask the questions that are listed above to different students.


  • Students need to raise their hands to answer.

  • Some students are much more willing to answer so spread the questions out around the room. This will give a better idea of how the class is doing.

10 mins.


  • Show the video of the Battle of Batoche

  • After the video allow the students to share some of the things they saw and the feelings they felt.

  • Show the map of the Battle of Batoche

  • Show some of the pictures that are painted of the Battle.

  • Ask students what they see in the pictures. Is someone portrayed as good/bad?

  • Hold up the pictures of Louis Riel and Gabriel Dumont.

  • State some reasons for the Battle. Such as the Government’s refusal to give their land away to the Métis People.

  • Explain to the class what happened after this battle

  • Louis Riel was hanged and many who fought had to leave Canada for a while.

  • Students need to raise their hands to answer.

  • Allow students to look at the map. And find Batoche

30 mins.


- Have the class write a sentence as an exit slip 1 reason for/or 1 result of Batoche.

- Hand out a blank piece of paper, students put on their name and their 1 sentence.

10 mins.

Lesson Plan

Topic: Life of the Métis People Class: Social Studies (Grade 4) Date:
Description of Lesson: This lesson will focus on the Métis people after the Battle of Batoche. What happened to them? It will also explore some current issues that the Métis people are facing.

Outcomes: Indicators:

DR4.2 Explain the relationship of First Nations and Métis peoples with the land.

- Research the Métis struggle for land, and the displacement of Métis people in the late 19th century.

- Assess the impact of historic loss of land on First Nations and Métis people.


  • News articles about Métis issues

  • Some dates of important moments in Saskatchewan Métis History from the last 100 years.

  • Maps showing Western Canada

Adaptive Dimension:

  • Students can research why Métis do not have the same rights to the land that First Nations People do.

  • Students will work in group to discuss issues

  • If students are shy to talk, then they can write out their ideas and questions and I will read them.


- Formative Observation. Do students understand what the issues are that we are discussing?


- Developing thinking

- Geographic literacy

- Developing social responsibility

- Developing identity and interdependence
Prerequisite Learnings:

  • Reasons that Métis left Red River Colony

  • Students need to know how to work in groups.

  • Students need to know how to discuss issues.

Lesson Preparation:

  • Find articles that relate to the Métis struggle to gain identity and their struggle to regain land.



  • What happened to Métis people after the Battle of Batoche? What happened to Gabriel Dumont?

  • Ask the class if they think the Métis people have been treated fairly by Canada?


  • Students can answer questions by using their hands

  • Encourage some of the quieter kids to answer. We want lots of discussion.


-10 mins.


  • Read the history from the Métis History of Saskatchewan Website.

  • Discuss the importance of these dates and the hardships that they created for Métis people.

  • Read the article from the Winnipeg Free Press about the Manitoba Métis people taking the Government of Canada to court.

  • Have the students ask what they think will happen. Do they know what is there now? What would happen to all those people? Why do Métis care so much about hunting and fishing rights? Where do you get your food?

  • Some explanation will be required as the students will probably not have a clue about some of this stuff.

  • Keep the discussion moving along by introducing new points every couple of minutes.

40 mins.


- Have the students write an exit slip that answers the question, “What do you think the future holds for the Métis People”

- All students will fill out an exit slip with their name and answer to the question on it.

5 mins.

1930: The Natural Resources Transfer Agreement returned control of natural resources to the three Prairie Provinces. The Métis are impacted by paragraph 12 which argued that the Indians have the right to harvest food on unused Crown land.
1935: The Prairie Farm Rehabilitation Act became legislation. The act created common community pastures, which eventually led to the forced removal of many Métis living along unused Crown land.
1995: The Métis Nation of Saskatchewan and the Province of Saskatchewan signed a memorandum of understanding regarding management of the province’s wildlife resources.
 1995: R. v. Morin and Daigneault. Bruce Morin and Dennis Daigneault, from Turnor Lake, Saskatchewan, first had their court case heard in provincial court in Buffalo Narrows.  The two were charged with fishing violations. The Saskatchewan Court of Queen’s Bench affirmed that they had an Aboriginal right to harvest fish via s. 32 of the Constitution.
 1995: R. v. Grumbo. In this case, John Grumbo (Grandbois) was charged under The Wildlife Act for receiving deer meat from a First Nations person. The appellant unsuccessfully argued before a provincial court in Yorkton that the Métis have an “Indian” right to hunt on unoccupied Crown lands via paragraph 12 of the 1930 Natural Resources Transfer Agreement. 
1996: (April). Morin and Daigneault are acquitted for fishing without licences because the court ruled that the 1906 Scrip Commission did not extinguish their Aboriginal rights to fish. The court ruling also decreed that this right was protected by s.35 of the Constitution.
 1996: (August). John Grumbo was acquitted on an appeal to the Court of Queen’s Bench.  With this ruling, any person of Métis ancestry could hunt without a licence in Saskatchewan, including Métis from outside the province.
1998: (May). The Saskatchewan Court of Appeal overturned the Court of Queen’s Bench decision in R. v. Grumbo. The court decided that they were not sure if the Métis had the same hunting rights as Indians via the 1930 Natural Resources Transfer Agreement.
 1998: (May). Saskatchewan Environment and Resource Management implemented a policy whereby Métis living in the Northern Administrative District had an Aboriginal right to hunt and fish.  However, Métis living elsewhere in this province did not have this right. 
2002:  (January 28, 2002). The Province of Saskatchewan proclaimed The Métis Act, which recognized the Métis as unique and founding people of the province. The act also strengthened the bilateral process through continued negotiations.

2003: (September 19). In R. v. Powley, the Supreme Court of Canada declared that the Métis appellants, Steve and Rod Powley, had an Aboriginal right to hunt through s. 32 of the Constitution.  Further, this right could apply to any Métis living in the Métis Homeland if the Métis appellant could demonstrate a connection to a historic Métis community. The case impacted Métis case law across Canada.

 2003: (September 19).  In R. v. Blais, the Supreme Court of Canada declared that the Métis were not “Indians” under the hunting rights provision of the Natural Resources Transfer Agreement.  The status of Métis hunting rights awaited the province’s final interpretation of the recent Supreme Court decisions, R. v. Powley and R. v. Blais, which argued that the Métis possess “Indian” hunting rights.

Internet Sources:
The Hudson’s Bay Company: Our History;
The Métis Nation of Saskatchewan: History

Gabriel Dumont Institute of Native Studies and Applied Research

  • “Gabriel Dumont: Métis Legend”; by: Shulman, Martin, Racette, Calvin, and Payne, Lorna

  • Métis Historical Booklet Series: Louis Riel; by: Joanne Pelletier

  • Métis Historical Booklet Series: Gabriel Dumont; by: Joanne Pelletier

  • Métis Historical Booklet Series: The Buffalo Hunt; by: Joanne Pelletier

  • Métis Historical Booklet Series: The North-West Resistance of 1885; by: Joanne Pelletier

  • The Métis: Our People, Our Story; by: Darren R. Préfontaine, Leah Dorion

YouTube: Québec History 23 - Métis North-West Resistance

Bishop’s North-West War Map, by: George Bishop (1885)
Hudson’s Bay Company fur trade, ca 1890, The Canadian Fur Trade in the Industrial Age, by: Authur J. Ray.
Paper Resources:
Angelique: Angel in the snow; by Cora Taylor
Annette’s People: the Métis; by David C. Rempel and Laurence Anderson; 1987
Canada’s people: the Métis; by Pyhillis Cardinal and Dale Ripley
Contrasting Worlds; by Calvin Racette; 1985
Drops of brandy: and other traditional Métis tunes: Gabriel Dumont Institute; 2001
Fort Chipewyan homecoming: a journey to native Canada, by: Morningstar Mercredi, 1997

Fingerweaving Untangled: An illustrated beginner’s guide including detailed patterns and common mistakes; by Carol James; 2008
Gabriel Dumont: the Métis chief and his lost world, by: George Woodstock, 1978
Good for nothing, by Michel Noel; translated by Shelley Tanaka
Li Minoush, by Bonnie Murray; illustrated by Sheldon Dawson; translated by Rita Flamand, 2001
Louis Riel; by Rosemary Neering; 1999
Métis cookbook and guide to healthy living; Métis Center, National Aboriginal Health Organization; 2008
Métis Dances: a teacher handbook for kindergarten to grade 9, Saskatchewan Education, 1988
Native Chiefs and famous Métis: leadership and bravery in the Canadian West; by: Holly Quan; 2003
Métis land claim appeal reaches top court; From : The Canadian Press; Feb. 10, 2011
Steps in time II: Métis dance & Instruction featuring “The Métis Thunder” dancers; Gabriel Dumont Institute, 2008
The Flower Beadwork People, by: Sherry Farrell Racette, 1991
The Flower Beadwork People. Teacher’s manual: people, places and stories of the Métis. By: Saskatchewan Education
The Lady at Batoche, by David Richards, 1999
The Métis; by Jennifer Howse; 2008
The Métis: A visual history; by Sherry Farrell Racette; 2010
The Métis Alphabet book; by Joseph Jean Fauchon; illustrated by Sheldon Mauvieux; 2005
The Métis: Two worlds meet; by: Sherry Farrell-Racette, Calvin Racette, Joanne Pelletier
Western Development Museum. Guide for teachers: Saskatchewan 1905 – 2005; edited by: Leslee Newman and Amy McInnis; 2008
What’s the most beautiful thing you know about horses?; by Richard Van Camp; illustrated by George Littlechild; 1998
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