‘Recreation as Re-creation?’: Analyzing how Aboriginal students’ experienced and reported their recreation within two Canadian residential schools

Main Article Content

Simon John Barrick


This exploratory study examines how Aboriginal students experienced recreation within two Canadian residential schools. Using archival research and a qualitative, thematic analysis approach, two schools’ student publications, The Mount Elgin Sputnik and The Wigwam News, dated from 1946 to 1958 were analyzed to uncover Aboriginal students’ recreational experiences. Specifically, three research questions were addressed: (1) What role did recreation play in Canadian residential schools? (2) How did Aboriginal students experience recreation in these institutions? and (3) What values did students report from their recreational experiences? Results indicate substantial diversity within both the types of recreational activities students experienced and the values students’ reported surrounding these recreational pursuits. This study represents an entry point into better understanding recreation’s historic place within Canada’s residential school system. Overall, this study unpacks recreation’s diverse roles in two Canadian residential schools from a range of student perspectives.

Article Details

General Leisure - Other
Author Biography

Simon John Barrick, University of Waterloo

Department of Recreation and Leisure - Master's Student