Welcome. We hope you’re looking forward to our upcoming livestream on Wednesday, April 17, 2024.

This interactive programme takes place in the three stages below, each of which is flexible to suit your schedule. 

Be sure to read through this entire Hub for important step-by-step instructions, and resources to participate.

Ce Centre d’instructions est également disponible en français. Il suffit de cliquer sur la langue désirée dans le menu supérieur.

1. Prepare Your Class

Our livestream lesson plan was designed by educators like you to enrich your students’ learning experience before, during, and after the event. Feel free to use any or all of these included activities:

  • Pre- and post-viewing activities
  • Guiding discussion questions
  • Suggested additional activities
  • Student handouts
  • Comprehension and discussion questions for the film

To provide a supported and safe learning environment during the film and livestream viewings, please use these guides, developed in collaboration with a diverse set of educators, including those who identify as Indigenous, and those who are Black and/or persons of colour. The package includes best practices for teachers, a handout for students, and information about external support and counselling services for youth.

We’ll have lots of opportunities for engagement in the livestream itself through our interactive platform, but your students can also get involved with hands-on activities leading up to the livestream.

Here are just a few ideas:

  • Print out this poster to put in your classroom or school to build excitement for the event
  • Students can help set up the big screen and sound equipment for your group to watch. You can even use the school auditorium or theatre.
  • Share any student work based on our lesson plans with the email below

If your students get involved, we’d love to hear about it or see photos. Write to us at [email protected] 

2. Show the Film

Our livestream centres on the short documentary Honour to Senator Murray Sinclair, so be sure to watch that first.

Screen the film for your students between April 3 and 17, if you can (if not, see note below). Please make sure to plan the date now. We recommend screening the film and the livestream close together to ensure the content is still fresh in students’ minds.

Honour to Senator Murray Sinclair is 29 minutes long. 

NOTE: You can watch the film and a recording of the livestream any time you’d like, up to the end of the school year, but only questions and comments submitted by April 17 can be included in the show. Our interactive platform will still be live all year for students to add their insights, and read through comments from their peers.

The film link will arrive in your email inbox on April 2 – look for the subject line “Instructions #2: Your link for Honour to Senator Murray Sinclair”. The link will be active for 16 days, from the very first time you hit play. 

For those of you teaching remotely, you may share the film link directly with your students, but please make sure to communicate that it is a private link.

If you ordered a DVD, you will receive that in advance of the date you requested.

*Please note: if you’ve requested to preview the film, we will send a separate link to your inbox shortly after you register.

  • We highly recommend you test the system beforehand using the same computer, projector, and speakers you’ll be using on the screening day. You can test using this short preshow video.
  • Connect your device to the projector or monitor using an HDMI cable or similar setup. This is much more reliable than connecting wirelessly through an application like Chromecast or AirPlay.
  • How’s the aspect ratio? If the picture seems distorted, stretched, or squashed, try adjusting the aspect ratio settings on your projector.
  • Project the film on the largest screen you can.
  • Show the film in the darkest room you can. Draw the blinds or curtains, if possible.
  • Be sure to make the video full-screen by double-clicking the centre of the video, or clicking the square full-screen button in the bottom-right corner.
  • For detailed instructions and FAQ, please see our Streaming Platform Guide.

3. Participate in the Livestream

We’ve created an engaging and easy-to-use platform for students across the country to interact with one another, and with our special guest.

Whether you’re joining live or watching a recording of the livestream, this is an important way to get your students participating through discussion boards, quiz questions, chat, and of course, asking questions.

It’s really easy – your students simply go to this link to participate:


If you’re watching the livestream on April 17:
Use Meeting Pulse during the livestream to engage, share, and interact in real time.

If you’re watching the livestream as a recording after April 17:
There are two opportunities to participate:  

  • For a chance to have your students’ comments included in the livestream, make sure to watch the film and engage on Meeting Pulse BEFORE April 17. You can log on right after watching the film.
  • Then, connect again on Meeting Pulse for new activities while you’re watching the livestream recording.

Students can use Meeting Pulse individually at their seats or as a class on one screen at the front. 

And don’t worry, everything on Meeting Pulse is anonymous, and all discussions will be moderated by our team.

🔴 TIP: Be sure to test out the interactive platform beforehand using your school network. If Meeting Pulse is blocked by your school board, please put in a request with your board to have it unblocked for a few days.

The livestream airs on Wednesday, April 17. If you’re watching live, make sure to check the time in your region, and if you’re planning to watch the recording, it will be available immediately afterwards at all the same links below.

Here are your links to participate:

A. Watch the Livestream:

B. Use the Interactive Platform:

C. Livestream & Interactive Platform side-by-side on one screen:

🔴 TIP: For the best experience, make sure students use our interactive platform while watching.

About our Guests:

Alanis Obomsawin (Abenaki)
Director of Honour to Senator Murray Sinclair

Alanis Obomsawin is one of the most acclaimed Indigenous directors in the world and has made 65 documentaries on issues affecting Indigenous people in Canada. For over five decades, her films have showcased and celebrated Indigenous voices while bringing attention to Canada’s colonial history and making a profound impact on Canada’s path toward reconciliation. 

A revered figure among documentary filmmakers and in Indigenous communities, Alanis Obomsawin is a Companion of the Order of Canada, and a recipient of the Governor General’s Lifetime Artistic Achievement Award, among many other honours.

Her award-winning filmography includes Kanehsatake: 270 Years of Resistance, Trick or Treaty?, Our People Will Be Healed and Incident at Restigouche. In November 2023, the NFB launched Alanis Obomsawin: A Legacy, an exclusive 12-disc box set featuring 28 new and classic films curated by Obomsawin herself.

You can read a full biography here.

Kelly Boutsalis (Mohawk)

Kelly Boutsalis is a Mohawk freelance journalist from the Six Nations of the Grand River reserve. Currently living in Toronto, she devotes the bulk of her work to highlighting Indigenous stories in film, television, fashion and beyond. Her byline has appeared in The New York Times, Vogue, Toronto Star, Toronto Life, and The Walrus. She led the CBC Six Nations pop-up bureau earlier this year. She is also Programmer, International, Canadian features for the Toronto International Film Festival.

REEL CANADA’s livestreams are generously supported by funders like the Youth Take Charge Program, who want to hear what your students have to say about the event! Help keep this programme free by having each student complete a short feedback form right after watching the livestream.

You’ll receive a package of printed feedback forms in the mail, along with a pre-paid return envelope. If you need to print more forms, or forms in a different language, they’re available here in English and French.

In the package, you’ll also find a printed teacher feedback form for you, or you can complete this online version instead.

To return the completed forms, simply mail them back to this address using the envelope provided. Postage will be covered by REEL CANADA.

720 Bathurst Street, suite 504
Toronto, ON
M5S 2R4

Want to extend the discussion after the livestream? This list of curated films provides additional opportunities for conversation, covering a range of subjects relating to the ongoing inter-generational impact of Canada’s residential school system on Indigenous communities.

Note: For a personalised form prefilled with your information, please click on the “Order Films” button in any of our monthly newsletters, or write to [email protected]

Feature Films

Indian Horse

(100 Min)

Adapted from the much-celebrated novel by the late Ojibway writer Richard Wagamese, Indian Horse is a powerful drama that delves deep into the shameful history of Canada’s Residential Schools.

The young protagonist of Wagamese’s saga – brought to the screen by a team that includes director Stephen Campanelli, screenwriter Dennis Foon and executive producer Clint Eastwood — Saul comes to know the worst of the system’s abuses after a series of family tragedies leave him in the care of authorities in Manitoba of the late 1950s.

When one of the priests – played by Michiel Huisman of Game of Thrones – recognizes Saul’s hockey talents, a potential pathway opens up before the youngster but like so many survivors of the schools, he remains haunted by the traumas of the past.

nîpawistamâsowin: We Will Stand Up

(98 Min)

On August 9, 2016, a 22-year-old Cree man named Colten Boushie was killed by a gunshot to the back of his head after entering a rural farm property in Saskatchewan with his friends. When an all-white jury acquitted the white farmer of all charges, the case received international attention and sent Colten’s family and community on a quest to fix the Canadian justice system.

Sensitively directed by Tasha Hubbard, this profoundly affecting documentary weaves a narrative encompassing the filmmaker’s own family story, the history of colonialism on the Prairies, and a vision of a future where Indigenous children can live safely on their homelands.

Nîpawistamâsowin was the opening night film at Hot Docs 2019, where it won the prize for Best Canadian Documentary.

Night Raiders

(101 Min)

A compelling and propulsive dystopian thriller grounded in an allegory for the residential school system, Night Raiders is the story of Niska (Tailfeathers), a Cree mother in an impossible situation. As she travels across a war-torn Turtle Island (North America), she is caught in a desperate attempt to save her daughter from a state-run forced re-education camp. With the world against her, Niska joins forces with a group of underground resistance fighters seeking to free their children and save their future.

Anchored by an incredible lead performance from Tailfeathers along with a stellar supporting cast, this powerful and heartfelt debut feature from Danis Goulet premiered at TIFF in 2021 and was nominated for eleven Canadian Screen Awards, winning six, including Best Original Screenplay.

Night Raiders should become the most talked-about Canadian film of the year. And for good reason.” – Barry Hertz, The Globe and Mail

Our People Will Be Healed

(97 Min)

Master documentarian Alanis Obomsawin’s 50th film reveals how a Cree community in Manitoba has been enriched through the power of education. The students at a local school for the Norway House Cree Nation discuss their aspirations for the future and reflect on the fact that they are feeling more hopeful and optimistic than previous generations.

By discussing the effects of intergenerational trauma, substance abuse and many other issues facing Indigenous communities, and by learning about their own history and culture, the students are able to undergo a process of collective healing and ensure that growing up doesn’t mean leaving one’s roots behind.

This inspiring doc shows that the strength of the community comes from the people within it, and provides a strong model for prosperity and renewal.

Our People Will Be Healed breathes with hope for the future.” – Pat Mullen, POV Magazine

Rise: The Urban Rez

(44 Min)

Winnipeg is home to the largest urban Indigenous population in the country, with a high percentage living in a low-income neighbourhood with the highest crime rate in the city. In the face of a staggering number of cases of missing Indigenous women and girls, the community has decided to take a stand, working on an individual level to support, protect and improve the lives of its residents.

Hosted by Gitz Crazyboy (Blackfoot, Dene) this documentary shows the brave fighters who have dedicated themselves to the cause and delves into the underlying factors and intergenerational trauma that has allowed this environment to develop in the first place.

Short Films

Against The Grain

(24 Min)

Survivors of the Indian residential school system attempt to cope with its impact on their personal lives and communities. A good primer for discussions of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission report.

Christmas at Moose Factory

(13 Min)

Legendary documentarian Alanis Obomsawin’s debut film is a first-hand look at the experience of children in a residential school during Christmastime.

Sisters and Brothers

(3 Min)

In a pounding critique of Canada’s colonial history, this short film draws parallels between the annihilation of the bison in the 1890s and the devastation inflicted on the Indigenous population by the residential school system. Part of the Souvenir series, it’s one of four films by First Nations filmmakers that remix archival footage to address Indigenous identity and representation, reframing Canadian history through a contemporary lens.

When the Children Left

(13 Min)

With no high school in their community, the people of Shoal Lake 40 First Nation must send their children away from home at only 14 years old in order to access educational opportunities.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to write to [email protected]

Or give us a call toll-free at 1-888-508-0881 ext. 228