Grade 2 student Makenna Pohl throws a ring while Evan Geurtsen (left) and Dane Inglis look on during Annie L. Gaetz Elementary School’s National Indigenous Day celebration Thursday. (Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff)

Red Deer elementary school students play Indigenous games

Annie L. Gaetz Schools holds first-ever First Nations, Métis and Inuit Field Day Thursday

Some Red Deer elementary school students played Indigenous games for the first time.

Annie L. Gaetz School held its first-ever First Nations, Métis and Inuit Field Day Thursday to celebrate National Indigenous Peoples Day.

“We have 12 stations set up; they include everything from bannock and tea to drumming to several Inuit games, Métis games and First Nations games that were traditionally used thousands of years ago, right here where we’re standing,” said Larry Hartel, school principal.

Hartel said the school will normally have a track and field meet around this time each year. Staff decided to focus on Indigenous games this year.

“These are games that would be traditionally be used to test skill, dexterity and balance,” he said.

After students played the various games, they went indoors and finished the day creating artwork.

“The kids are really enjoying themselves,” Hartel said. “These games are very unique to them, and unlike things that are more traditional like long jump or high jump, these games are completely new, which makes it a little more fun.”

Grade 5 students organized and ran each station. They would describe the game and oversee the younger students playing.

“It’s been so successful this year that our plan is to make it an annual event – at least for a few years,” Hartel said.



sean.mcintosh@reddeeradvocate.com

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Karen Unterschultz, parent volunteer, helps students put butter and jam on their bannock during Annie L. Gaetz Elementary School’s National Indigenous Day celebration Thursday. (Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff)

Grade 2 students Maddox Hallock (left) and Ty Vandevelde drumming during Annie L. Gaetz Elementary School’s National Indigenous Day celebration Thursday. (Photo by SEAN MCINTOSH/Advocate staff)

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