Aboriginal Perspectives


Birch Trees
Jessica Wesaquate and Andrea Rogers

Grade Level:

One to Three



Pre-requisite Knowledge:

working in partners/groups


Students will be able to brainstorm individually or in a group the things that Mother Nature
provides for us on earth.

Students will be able to indicate and provide a brief description of what a pattern is.


sticky-notes, pencils/pens

Related Video:

Rosella Carney


In the First Nations way of life, the environment plays a significant role. Mother Earth is our provider. Have students brainstorm as a class or in small groups the things that Mother Earth provides for us. One of the things Mother Nature provides us with is the tree. In today's lessons students will be exploring a part of a tree, its leaves.


As a class you are going to head outside and find a surrounding where there are trees (Birch bark trees will work well if they are in your area). Look around the trees for leaves, have each student find a leaf that has fallen off the tree. Don't have them pick ones off of the branches unless there are none that have fallen yet.

Ask students if they know what a pattern is? Where have they seen patterns before? Give them a formal definition and provide examples they may not have mentioned. When your in the indoor setting again, it would be a great idea to provide your students with examples of Aboriginal art forms that show pattern.

Now that they know what a pattern is, have them look at their leaves. Can they observe a pattern? Have them use their sticky notes to record the characteristics of the leaves that could classify them as a pattern.

Discuss the students' observations of their leaves. Give them some time to explore the environment and indicate other items in the environment that have pattern.

Now that students have had the opportunity to explore the trees around the playground, whether they were birch bark trees or not, show them the Rosella Carney videos found on our website, aboriginalperspectives.uregina.ca They will be able to observe an art form that can be done with birch bark trees.


Have students illustrate an item that has a pattern. Have students indicate what it is about their illustration that makes it a pattern.