New UNBC research explores the power of intergenerational storytelling

A new research partnership between the Nak'azdli Whut'en First Nation and the University of Northern British Columbia is facilitating intergenerational story-telling and helping to preserve the stories for years to come.

UNBC assistant professor of nursing Dr. Shannon Freeman and Nak'azdli Health Director Jenny Martin co-led the program to bring elders and children in Grades 6 and 7 together to share stories and learn from each other.

article continues below

The elders shared their stories with the students passing down knowledge from one generation to another. The children recorded the stories, then added imagery and sounds to create digital versions of the stories that can be shared with community members for generations to come.

"It's a win for the children because they loved learning technology and they enjoyed the stories and it's a win for the elders because they loved coming out and they could see the children were enthusiastic. The elders felt valued," Freeman said. "It's also a win for the school because the project aligned with the curriculum. The project enables children to be users of technology rather than being recipients of something taught with technology."

Their research is published in the Canadian Journal on Aging, titled Use of a Digital Storytelling Workshop to Foster Development of Intergenerational Relationships and Preserve Culture with the Nak'azdli First Nation: Findings from the Nak'azdli Lha'hutit'en Project.

The genesis of the project came from a desire to create meaningful opportunities for elders to engage in different ways with the community.

"We conducted a survey of elders in the community and discovered that many of them felt lonely," Martin says. "This is a project that elders got excited about; they really enjoyed going to the school and sharing their stories."

Health director assistant Carrie Nash was instrumental in helping to run the program by promoting it to elders in the community and helping those without access to transportation to get to the school. The feedback she received from the Elders was overwhelmingly positive.

"The children were asking lots of questions all the time," Nash says. "The elders really enjoyed that and they really enjoyed having that communications with the young ones."

Read Related Topics

Comments

NOTE: To post a comment you must have an account with at least one of the following services: Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, Google+ You may then login using your account credentials for that service. If you do not already have an account you may register a new profile with Disqus by first clicking the "Post as" button and then the link: "Don't have one? Register a new profile".

The Prince George Citizen welcomes your opinions and comments. We do not allow personal attacks, offensive language or unsubstantiated allegations. We reserve the right to edit comments for length, style, legality and taste and reproduce them in print, electronic or otherwise. Comments that contain external links will not be permitted. For further information, please contact the editor or publisher, or see our Terms and Conditions.

comments powered by Disqus
Sign Up For Our e-Newsletter!

Kelly Road poll POLL

Are you in support of the proposed name for the new high school currently under construction in the Hart?

or  view results

Popular Citizen

Community Event Calendar


Find out what's happening in your community and submit your own local events.

Lowest Gas Prices in Prince George
Prince George Gas Prices provided by GasBuddy.com