Medicine Wheel Education was founded by Teddy Anderson, a multicultural individual that grew up in the Red Deer area amongst many cultures. Teddy was given the sacred permission to perform, teach and share the traditional First Nation's Hoop Dance while spending time at the Red Deer Aboriginal Dance Troupe. Teddy has continued some of his training with Kevin Locke, Lakota hoop dancer. In all of Teddy's travels he found there is a significant lack of First Nation's resources.
To respond to this need Medicine Wheel Education was born, a company that delivers on culturally appropriate books, resources and tools specialized for teachers and schools. The content of Medicine Wheel Education has been written and/or approved by First Nation's Elders and/or Peoples. We know that these cultural stories will make a positive difference in the world of education. Medicine Wheel Education has published 5 Children's Books and will have many more to come.
A MESSAGE FROM OUR FOUNDER- TEDDY ANDERSON:
Dear Educators, Parents and Community Members,
My name is Teddy Anderson and as far back as I can remember I have always been in love with First Nation's culture and its life lessons. My grandparents and my father lived with the Tlingit people since the 1950s. I spent time with Elders listening to stories, attending potlatches and learning traditions from many cultures. My grandparents and father were later adopted into the Tlingit Nation through the potlatch ceremony. When I was 15, spending my summer with my grandfather, I met Hoop Dancer at the Red Deer Aboriginal Dance Troupe. Through an offering of tobacco he taught me two lessons in how to dance and I earned the cultural protocol to dance.
Although my blood speaks to being Persian, English, Scottish and Norwegian, a lot of my life lessons and identity come from smudging, prayer, connecting with the land and learning the spirituality behind the Hoop Dance. In short, the Hoop Dance, the culture and the teachings changed my life and helped me to understand that everything is connected.
That is why I believe what we are doing at Medicine Wheel Education is so, so important! I believe this will not only benefit First Nation's children but all children. This is also about helping children, parents and teachers who are not First Nation's to understand the culture and to see it as dynamic, beautiful and welcoming. There so much cultural misunderstanding in our society, and Medicine Wheel Education is about building a bridge between cultures in an authentic, heartfelt and beautiful way.
I come from a family of privilege and I believe in using my privilege to make a positive change in our world.
Whenever you are working with sensitive cultural stories there are guidelines I have chosen to follow. Here they are:
1) Cultural Integrity:
All of our beautiful books, resources and other materials are designed with the explicit approval of First Nation's person. Every author and/ or Elder we work with is deeply connected to First Nation's culture.
2) For Everyone:
Some First Nation's cultural teachings are only shared with specific cultural ceremonies. These books reflect the First Nation's teachings that can be shared with everyone. Our goal is to help all people celebrate First Nation's culture with everyone.
3) Moral Messaging:
Every resource we offer carries a strong moral message that is rooted in the culture. First Nation's stories are filled with beautiful, heartfelt and educational messages that the world can benefit from. All of our books will demonstrate the depth and beauty of First Nation's culture.
I sincerely hope each one of you can appreciate your roles in these story books. It's time we band together as a society to celebrate and honour First Nation's stories, lessons and teachings.
With respect and gratitude,