In February, Grade 4-8 French Immersion students from St. Brigid Catholic Elementary School enjoyed a virtual visit from “Le Voyageur Errant” (The Wandering Traveler) to discuss the critical role that early voyageurs played in the development of Canadian identity.
Le Voyageur Errant is Jay Bailey, a former French Immersion teacher who has dedicated his retirement to living the life of an authentic voyageur. Since 2005, Bailey has travelled over 4000 km on fur trade routes in Canada and the United States. During his travels, he has taken part in reconciliation journeys with the Haudenosaunee of the Six Nations and their allies.
Students learned about the importance of the fur trade in the establishment of Canada and the impact of fur trade on Indigenous peoples. Bailey also shared his knowledge of survival practices, the physical demands of life in New France and his various interactions with Indigenous peoples.
This interactive presentation was done en-français, touching on various topics in the Ontario Curriculum including listening to understand and interact, speaking to communicate and interact, intercultural awareness and more.