Sila and the Land is the story of a young Inuk girl who goes on a journey across the North, East, South and West. Along the way Sila meets different animals, plants and elements that teach her about the importance of the land and her responsibilities to protect it for future generations.
Three young Indigenous women came together to write a children’s book that could help share perspectives on the land common across First Nations, Métis and Inuit communities. This includes a shared respect for the earth and an understanding of our responsibilities to protect it for future generations.
In order to convey these perspectives in the story, the authors spoke with youth from a number of Indigenous communities across Canada. They asked about why the environment was important to each of them and what land based teachings and experiences were significant to their identities and cultures. Their responses helped shape the book, offering examples of things Sila could learn from the land during her journey travelling across the North, East, South and West.
It is important to note that while there are shared perspectives across Indigenous communities there are also many differences. This book does not claim to represent any specific cultures or teachings, but instead encourages children and youth to seek out knowledge from the territories that they are living on. It also aims to inspire other young Indigenous writers and illustrators to believe in their gifts and the power of their stories.
This book is supplemented by a number of curriculum-linked learning activities.