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FNSS Curriculum Integration Project Click here to download this lesson.
Kristina Grant (MS-Word format.)

Grade: 4
Lesson 2: Experience a component of Inuit culture
Time: 40 minutes

Topic: Using Inuit Inuksuits to navigate

Rationale: For students to experience Inuit culture, using Inuksuits to find their way around a course. Students will understand that this traditional symbol can still be used in today’s society.

Materials and Resources

  • collection of rocks to build Inuksuits
  • parent helper if possible
  • Inuksuit: Silent Messengers of the Arctic. by Norman Hallendy. Douglas & McIntyre Vancouver 2000.

Main Concepts

  • Traditional Inuit culture-directional symbols

Intended Learning Outcomes

  • to understand the relationship between culture and its need. (to have a way to find their way around landscape)
  • to explore the interactions of people with their environment
  • to experience an alternate physical education style.

Teacher Preparation

  • using a map of the school grounds, or a nature path, to have as the basis of the route
  • map out a route which will take students about 30 min to complete.
  • build, about knee high, Inuksuits prior to the activity. Refer to Inuksuit book for models
  • position Inuksuit along the course, each one pointing the way to the next.
  • have a start and finish point. Start point should be positioned in some way, to conceal the next Inuksuit’s direction from the students who haven’t yet started. Ex. Around a corner of the school or tree etc...

Planned Learning Activities

  1. Have a warm up and stretching and 2 laps around a field
  2. Review with students function of the Inuksuits. What do they do?
  3. How do we read them?
  4. Divide students into groups of 4-5 students each
  5. Explain to students that they are going to complete a route, using the Inuksuits to find their way around from start to finish.
  6. Have at least one parent at farthest point on course if possible, to help monitor students
  7. Start groups approximately 2 min apart
  8. Monitor students that they are staying on course
  9. When students are finished, get them to reflect in a journal entry about how effective they believe the Inuksuit are in giving directions and how important were the Inuksuit in finishing the course, and how important would the Inuksuit be if they were the only source of directional information?


  • Are students participating-observations
  • Did student complete the course according to instructions and using the Inuksuit
  • Completion of journal entry, commenting on given questions.


  • students could create their own courses and position their Inuksuits

Integrated Opportunities

  • Social Studies—students could find other ancient cultures symbols and compare them to the Inuit
  • Science—what kinds of rocks are the Inuksuit made of?

Resources Used and Supplementary Materials Available

  1. Inuksuit: Silent Messengers of the Arctic. by Norman Hallendy. Douglas & McIntyre Vancouver 2000.
  2. www.gov.yk.ca

Summative Criteria
Experiencing a Component of Inuit Culture

Criteria Ratings Comments
Student has taken part with enthusiasm and respect 4 3 2 1  
Student indicates that s/he recognizes the importance between environment and culture 4 3 2 1  
Student applied knowledge from lesson to accomplish task 4 3 2 1  
Student demonstrates an appreciation and understanding of the Inuit culture 4 3 2 1  

4 – Powerful
3 – Good
2 – Basic
1 – Beginning