2024 Indigenous Math Education K-12 Symposium

Clayton Gauthier | Sacred Salmon Journey

Indigenous Community, Storytelling, and Mathematical Flourishing

May 14 and May 21, 2024 Virtual

This powerful mural by artist Clayton Gauthier Cree/Dakelh tells the story of the salmon’s journey from mountain rivers to ocean and back again. It’s a story of risk and strength, of protection and ceremony. It’s a story of inter-relationships, respect, and responsibility. As they travel the rivers and streams, salmon provide food and nutrients for bears and eagles. Bears, in turn, leave salmon carcasses for others to feed, while their scat fertilizes the forest floor and river beds becoming nutrients for monumental cedars above and fungi below. Healthy trees with fractal roots stabilize the river banks guiding salmon with a clear path to their destination.

Written in Gauthier’s mural are stories of how, from time immemorial, Indigenous communities have lived well with salmon, harvesting with honour only what is needed while sustaining land, water, and sky for salmon’s return. Cycles of renewal, relationships, and flourishing are storied in the mural with patterns of land, language, and living well.

The story of Salmon’s journey introduces this year’s Symposium theme: Indigenous Communities, Storytelling, and Mathematical Flourishing. How might Indigenous communities and storytelling provide other ways of relating mathematically and teaching mathematics? How can mathematical flourishing guide us to live well with each other, living-beings, and Earth?

Session 1 May 14: Indigenous Storytelling and Mathematical Flourishing with Richard Van Camp 3:30-5:00pm PT

Our featured speaker, storyteller Richard Van Camp, is a proud Tlicho Dene from Fort Smith, NWT, currently residing in Edmonton, Alberta. A recipient of the Order of the Northwest Territories, Richard is an internationally renowned storyteller and award-winning best-selling author of 30 books and graphic novels including The Spirit of Denendeh series & Moccasin Square Gardens. His novel, The Lesser Blessed is now a movie by First Generations Films. Richard has degrees from En’owkin International School of Writing, the University of Victoria Creative Writing (BFA), and the University of British Columbia Creative Writing (MA). Richard will make us laugh while sharing stories that bring together mathematics and Indigenous communities for living well.

Richard Van Camp’s presentation and follow-up discussion will prepare us for the May 21st Session 2 Igniting the Sparkle Circle Sharing Sessions and the importance of relations for sharing our work together.

Session 2 May 21: Igniting the Sparkle Circle Sharing Sessions 3:30-5:00pm PT

Educators share their projects, questions and ideas. Please sign-up with registration

Registration is now closed. Thank you to everyone who has registered.