The Brightwater Science, Environmental and Indigenous Learning Centre provides unique land-based programming for middle years and high school students attending Saskatoon Public Schools. Brightwater programming is delivered through the integration of a variety of curricular subject areas and is based on the ecological knowledge of native prairie landscapes and honours Indigenous perspectives, content and ceremonies.
Brightwater provides an opportunity to teach and learn where land-based lessons can best be taught and learned — on the land! The learning that takes place at Brightwater is an extension of provincial curricula and supports the Truth and Reconciliation Commission Calls to Action in Education. Experiences follow pre-visit preparation in the classroom, and are the basis for many post-visit challenges.
There are two Brightwater sites located adjacent to one another on a quarter section of land approximately 14 kilometres south of Saskatoon. Middle years student programming is based from the 100 acres of land rented from the Salvation Army’s Beaver Creek Camp and high school programming is based from the adjoining 60 acres owned by Saskatoon Public Schools.
In spring 2013, the Nutrien Eco-Science and Indigenous Learning Centre was opened at the SPS Brightwater site. Thanks to a generous donation from Nutrien, the centre provides classroom, office and meeting room spaces, and kitchen facilities to support year-round student learning at the site.
Each year more than 3,000 elementary and high school students, teachers and volunteers participate in Brightwater experiences. Brightwater programming success can be attributed to the tremendous support received from the Saskatoon Public Schools Board of Trustees, SPS administrative council, Brightwater staff, First Nations Inuit and Métis Education Unit, teachers, parents, partners and the Saskatoon community as a whole.