Thursday, November 28, 2013

Mystery Skype; Manitoulin Island

          After participating in a Mystery Skype with an English Class from another part of Canada, we soon discovered their location which was, Manitoulin Island. We learned a lot about First Nations People, how they live, where they live, what they do and which Stereotypes were untrue. Both English classes watched the First Nations documentary, 8th Fire, which illustrated the First Nations culture. The Class we skyped with informed us that the documentary made them feel upset because of how their culture was portrayed. They explained how Natives on the reserve don't face these stereotypes but Natives that don't live on the reserve always have to deal with stereotypes. We learned they do practice their culture by: attending ceremonies, rain dances, powwows and smudges-which is a cleanse of the soul, mind and body with traditional medicines that they burn. They explained how their quality of education was very good, they have similar opportunities that we do: clubs, sports teams, field trips, dance classes etc. Another interesting comment from them, was that they would rather live on the reserve than live in an Urban setting because it is easier, quieter, they feel as though they are not judged and are not stared at as often and there aren't as many rules: they are allowed to drive quads around the reserve, do what they want on their own land, allowed to have passengers in the back of their pickup, etc. They have a happier life on the reserve when compared to people in the city. Personally, I enjoyed the Mystery Skype because it was an eye-opener, it taught us what was true, what was not and the differences between our cultures. I think the next Skype should be more prepared, everyone should be able to be in the Webcams view and we should try to be more organized to prevent any interruption of others. All in all, I liked the Mystery Skype experience and I am excited to be apart of the next one.


  1. Riley, you have done a great job summarising your learning from the Skype. I really enjoyed hearing the students' perspectives and gaining knowledge from them.

    I agree that the webcam should have been moved around. I need to figure out how to move it around effectively and still have the picture on the overhead screen.

  2. Hi Riley,
    It's interesting how different our learning is depending on the source. Although reading a variety of texts and viewing the video can inform us, the impact from speaking with a primary source (First Nations teens in this case) can be so much more powerful.

    I had a terrific time in the Mystery Skype and I agree that we should participate in more of them.