Remembering the Children Educational Package

Missing children and the existence of unmarked burial sites at Residential Schools across Canada have been well-known for decades among Indigenous communities. However, Canadians are still grappling with the truths about Residential Schools, spurring long-overdue conversations inside and outside the classroom.

Remembering the Children, the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation’s publication for students, offers a way to begin those conversations. It takes readers to a variety of Residential Schools across time and space, opening a door into a past that reverberates today, while also celebrating the resilience and resurgence of First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples’ culture.

Educator’s Guide

In schools, teachers and students are learning together about truth and acting together for reconciliation. Ongoing investigations at the sites of former Residential Schools have become the starting point for opening up these discussions and beginning this learning.

Students and teachers all over Canada will be at different stages of learning. We hope that the Remembering the Children publication and educator’s guide provide you with content, resources, voices and ideas so that you can continue these important conversations all year long.

Download the PDF of this guide.

Canada’s National History Society and the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation are grateful to all educators who are taking on this important work.


Also available in French

Lesson Plans

Remembering the Children: Teacher Reflections

How can you prepare yourself for having difficult conversations with students about the history and legacy of the Residential School system? How do you respond to students’ questions and feelings? How can you support students when they are learning about these histories?

Preparing for Difficult Conversations

In this lesson, students will assess their knowledge of the Residential School system and the ongoing investigations related to students who died while attending Residential Schools.

Considering the Role of Media on Public Awareness of Residential Schools

This lesson encourages students to reflect on the role of the media and the impact of the “news cycle” on public awareness of current affairs.

Examining the Evidence: Understanding Daily Life in Residential Schools

These activities encourage students to investigate conditions at Residential Schools and to consider how the schools disrupted traditional Indigenous ways of learning.

Reconciliation Through Revitalization

In this lesson, students will explore the concepts of cultural appropriation and cultural appreciation. Students will research contemporary Indigenous people or groups to understand the way they are revitalizing and sharing aspects of their cultures as part of the process of reconciliation.

Making Reconciliation Real

Students will explore the cultural and personal losses that children suffered while attending Residential Schools. Students will generate their own ideas about reconciliation and community action.

Other lessons on truth and reconciliation

Demonstrating Respect through Understanding and Taking Action (ReconciliAction)

This set of lessons encourages students to consider multiple perspectives of historical events and to explore what it means to be an ally.

Gibaajimominaan: Our Stories

In this lesson students will learn from residential school Survivors and consider what they can do to support the Survivors and their families.

Learning Humility Through Being a Witness

Through engaging in two acts of reconciliation, students will begin to understand the way humility puts us in a place of feeling small within the larger picture of issues and events.

Honesty: Taking Action

In this lesson, students will assess the outcomes of individual and collective action, and design a personal plan for reconciliation in their own lives and communities.



Truth and Reconciliation Week 2021

This free magazine is intended for students in grades 5–12. Through an allegorical graphic novel-style comic, it explores what it means to have guests arrive at your doorstep, and your home taken away, and how we can still find ways to live well together. Available in English, French and Inuktitut. Learn more

Every Child Matters

This free magazine, which is based on the Seven Sacred Teachings, is aimed for students in grades 5–12. Each chapter teaches children about residential schools, Treaties, and the historic and current relationships between Indigenous and non-Indigenous peoples. Available in English and French. Learn more