brendajoycegermainJoyce Germain and Brenda Germain are Nipugtugewei/ Forest Kindergarten educators, from Listuguj First Nation.

Joyce has been teaching Mi’gmaq immersion at Alaqsite’w Gitpu School for over 20 years, and has developed programs for Kindergarten and Grade 1 immersion (4-6 years old). Brenda has been teaching for more than 10 years, with specific expertise in early years curriculum development. Five years ago, they began Nipugtugewei Kindergarten, where mornings are spent in the classroom and afternoons are spent on the land. Both the in-class and outdoors components address provincial curriculum concepts in science, social studies, math, and language arts, as well as physical education. In the immersion stream of this program, all these subject areas include language-related and cultural learning outcomes.

Joyce and Brenda’s work has attracted a lot of attention from Indigenous educators, language educators, and nature-based educators alike, and they are regularly solicited to share their advice for creating outdoors programs that meet mainstream standards while nurturing their students’ well-being, as well as their linguistic and cultural development.

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