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Mythology in the stars

By Robin Dudgeon

Manitoba First Nations Education Resource Centre (MFNERC) has a very interesting tool to teach Aboriginal students about their mythology — an inflatable planetarium.

Wilfred Buck, who hails from Opaskwayak Cree Nation but now works for (MFNERC), tours his inflatable planetarium around the province to different schools as part of the MFNERC science curriculum. The planetarium made its way to Portage la Prairie during a MFNERC educational conference held at Canad Inns.

The planetarium is about five meters high and eight meters in diameter and can accommodate about 40 students. Each 30-40 minute session covers cardinal directions, the North Star and the Big Dipper, and constellations all from an Aboriginal perspective, as well as traditional astronomy like planets, stars, nebulae, and galaxies.

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