Loom Beading, Métis Finger Weaving, and LYNXcoding.club
In recognition of this National Day of Truth & Reconciliation
On this first National Day of Truth and Reconciliation, I wish to share this incredible work arising out of a multi-year, multi-site Indigenous mathematics research study headed by Dr. Ruth Beatty of Lakehead University.
It “was designed in response to a Canada-wide call from the Ministries of Education that recognized the need to explicitly incorporate Indigenous content in order to support identity building and appreciation of Indigenous perspectives and values. During the study, research teams across Ontario collaboratively explored connections between the mathematical content in the Ontario curriculum and the mathematics inherent in Indigenous cultural practices. The research teams comprised Indigenous leaders, artists, and educators and non-Indigenous educators who, after consultation with community Elders, co-planned and co-taught units of mathematics instruction based on Indigenous activities and artifacts, and then together analyzed and disseminated results. Although all teams explored culturally responsive mathematics education, each individual project was at the local grassroots level and driven by the views, opinions, resources, and interests of participating communities.”
The recent work has added in the exploration of “the interaction between Logo (Lynx) coding and Indigenous design, technology and artistry and how incorporating coding can help us to further understand Anishinaabe ways of knowing mathematics that both align with, and are different from, a Western European conception of mathematics.”
Follow #IKMath on Twitter
You can find much background on this project at the Supporting Indigenous Learners in Mathematics site**. In fact, you will also see much about the mathematics there. Please search, and follow, #IKMath on Twitter.
My involvement is a result of CanCode funding which allowed us to provide resources and coding expertise to Ruth, the team of educators, and to the students. Michael Quinn (creator of LynxCoding), Brenda Sherry, and I worked with TakingITGlobal to apply and secure the CanCode funding for our project CodeToLearn. (@CanCodeToLearn) And, in fact, Brenda introduced us to Ruth whom she had met (and been impressed by) when she was a vice-principal in Upper Grand District School Board! Thx Brenda!
I am sure I don’t need to emphasize just how important this work is. When those children are given the respect and the opportunities embedded in this initiative, it is a beautiful thing.
Much of the process involves conversations among the community members and adults. This is a community-driven initiative.
- learn about their culture from the elders
- have Indigenous artists come and teach them the artistry of their ancestors (loom beading or Métis finger weaving)
- come to understand the mathematics from that perspective
- then code it with a Canadian-made programming language (Lynx)
- once skilled in coding, students often then design in code, then create the beading artefact
- Note also that Lynx is currently available in Canadian English, French, Ojibwe, Mohawk, Oji-Cree, and Mi’kmaw (with more to come as more funding becomes available)
First, the Students Create a Design
Then Out Come the Looms!
Mike Fitzmaurice, in a tweet said—about the plan below—“some big smiles @eganvilleps as a student hit column 43 today!“
Some Coding Basics Related to Beading
Here is a link to a LYNX coding project that shows the basics of beading: https://lynxcoding.org/share/KygjQLhj0m Click on the green EDIT button to see the code.
The pattern above is made by executing the ‘core‘ program/code below.
to rb ;makes the red bead pd setpensize 15 setc 'red fd 15 pu end
to bb ;makes the blue bead pd setpensize 15 setc 'blue fd 15 pu end
to move ;moves turtle to begin next row bk 75 wait 2 rt 90 wait 2 fd 15 wait 2 lt 90 end
to column1 repeat 5 [rb wait 3] end
to column2 repeat 4 [rb wait 3] bb end
to column3 repeat 3 [rb wait 3] repeat 2 [bb wait 3] end
to column4 repeat 2 [rb wait 3] repeat 3 [bb wait 3] end
to column5 repeat 1 [rb wait 3] repeat 4 [bb wait 3] end
to column6 repeat 5 [bb wait 3] end
to core ;makes the pattern core column1 wait 2 move column2 wait 2 move column3 wait 2 move column4 wait 2 move column5 wait 2 move column6 wait 2 move end
to clearscreen cg end
Some More Advanced Beading
Dr. Ruth Beatty in a tweet said, “so much gratitude to @ruralchristina @MikeFitz157 @megleach55 @megdom55 and Laurie Bennett for pulling off a fully virtual beading, coding and math #IKMath project! Students used math to design, code, and loom beautiful beadwork. Thank you @renfrewraiders!! @CanCodeToLearn“
Mike Fitzmaurice retweeted @renfrewraiders “Ms. Turpin’s class has had the incredible learning opportunity to learn alongside leaders from @mylakehead & @AOP_FN in a special beading, coding, math & history project. Zoe Mosiondz-Sagmeister coded this individual beaded bracelet design in Lynx Coding. Amazing experience!“
Teachers First Lesson
These teachers were mostly new to coding and actually were extremely hesitant. They didn’t think they could do it. And, they certainly thought the younger kids wouldn’t be able to do it. Surprise. Surprise! 🙂
Métis Finger Weaving
Here is a link to a project for a first attempt at finger weaving:
https://lynxcoding.org/share/vDG860pPdo Click on the blue EDIT button to see the code.
to setup everyone [pu setpensize 15] cg r1, setpos [160 180] b2, setpos [180 180] r3, setpos [200 180] b4, setpos [220 180] r5, setpos [240 180] b6, setpos [260 180] r7, setpos [280 180] b8, setpos [300 180] everyone [seth 180] end
to redturtles tto [r1 r3 r5 r7] setc 'red' end
to blueturtles tto [b2 b4 b6 b8] setc 'blue' end
to weave pd fd 20 wait 2 rt 90 fd 160 wait 2 lt 90 end
to core b8, weave position1 wait 2 r7, weave position2 wait 2 b6, weave position3 wait 2 r5, weave position4 wait 2 b4, weave position5 wait 2 r3, weave position6 wait 2 b2, weave position7 wait 2 r1, weave position8 wait 2 end
to sash repeat 4 [core] stopall end
to position1 tto [r1 b2 r3 b4 r5 b6 r7] pd fd 20 pu end
to position2 tto [b8 r1 b2 r3 b4 r5 b6] pd fd 20 pu end
to position3 tto [r7 b8 r1 b2 r3 b4 r5] pd fd 20 pu end
to position4 tto [b6 r7 b8 r1 b2 r3 b4] pd fd 20 pu end
to position5 tto [r5 b6 r7 b8 r1 b2 r3] pd fd 20 pu end
to position6 tto [b4 r5 b6 r7 b8 r1 b2] pd fd 20 pu end
to position7 tto [r3 b4 r5 b6 r7 b8 r1] pd fd 20 pu end
to position8 tto [b2 r3 b4 r5 b6 r7 b8] pd fd 20 pu end
Some Key People
Ruth Beatty – @ruthbeatty11
Mike Fitzmaurice – @MikeFitz157
Heather Lett – HeatherLett68
Christina Ruddy Lavalley – Indigenous Artist @ruralchristina
Colinda Clyne – @clclyne
Bonnie Sears – @BonnieSears20
Sara Furnival – @sarafurnival
Nina Perrault – @NinaPrimeau
Megan Leach – @megleach55
Laurie Bennett – Indigenous Artist
Leslie Muma – Indigenous Artist
Jennifer King – Indigenous Artist @JenniferNKing
Brenda Sherry – @brendasherry
Michael Quinn – @coding_lynx
TakingITGlobal – @TakingITGlobal
Also — a shout out to Nadine McSpadden and Jess Kyle who have done awesome Salish weaving work and coding in British Columbia!
(Forgive me as I will miss some key people. Please feel free to add them in a comment.)
Thanks for checking this out. We are looking forward to more collaborations going forward. May this work serve our children well. Follow #IKMath!
**Some of the Supporting Indigenous Learners in Mathematics site seems to require access…but, much of it does not! So look around! Or request access. 🙂