TELUS Spark Calgary's Science Centre
Indigenous Ways of Knowing Science

Ways of Being

Indigenous Ways of Knowing at Every Visit

Indigenous Ways of Knowing at Every Visit to Spark 

The southern direction represents both onsite and virtual experiences at TELUS Spark Science Centre to connect with the land. Indigenous knowledge is woven through three main areas: indoors, outside and digitally.

Indigenous Languages at Spark

Spark Science Centre is on a journey to better bring in Indigenous languages into every area of the science centre. Some exhibits at Spark have Blackfoot language and music represented, a trend that will continue with future experiences.

  • All Treaty 7 languages will be represented into the outdoor gathering space and medicine garden.
  • Indigenous Science Nights focus on the depth of science within Indigenous languages.
  • Sacred Defenders of the Universe, an upcoming digital immersion experience, will incorporate the languages of the local land within the experience.
  • Blackfoot Skies: Makoiohsokoyi, a portable planetarium show, has Blackfoot language woven throughout.
  • Quantum Sandbox, a 2022 digital immersion experience, was guided by Elder Dr. Leroy Little Bear (Kainai) and Astronomer Rob Cardinal (Siksika). There is drumming from Young Warrier (Siksika), Hal and Tristen Eagletail, singing from Hal and Cherokee Eagletail, and flute from Dallas Arcand Jr.
  • One Day On Venus was a temporary exhibit (2021) that had Blackfoot language represented upon consultation with Blackfoot Elders. Following protocols, this exhibit also featured in-person Morning Star storytelling events.

Ways of Being, Onsite

Transformation Through Good Chemistry

Spark works with Indigenous Elders and Indigenous community members to weave Indigenous science and ways of knowing into the gallery reinvention project.

Spark is redesigning all spaces inside and outside of the building over the next five years. With a theme of regeneration, the science centre is weaving multiple ways of knowing into this redesign. What makes Spark unique? The land it is on and its connection to community. Members of the Spark Advisory Circle and Indigenous community members have been, and will continue to be, an integral part of the engagement process that informs the science centre transformation.

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Representation of Indigenous Languages

A welcome sign at the main entrance to Spark greets all visitors in Treaty 7 languages. A permanent welcome and land acknowledgment are an integral part of the redesign plans for the entry experience.

Spark is working with Blackfoot Elders to create Blackfoot language audio related to gallery experiences.

Land Acknowledgement

Guided by the Indigenous Advisory Circle, the Telus Spark Science Centre land acknowledgement has multiple parts, connecting to the original caretakers and including a personal reflection.

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Entrance Redesign

Spark is consulting with Indigenous Elders about how best to connect the building's main entrance to the stories of the land, creating a space that welcomes everyone into Spark, a “home of knowledge.”

Outdoor Gathering Space

Spark is working with local Elders, Knowledge Keepers and “to be” Knowledge Keepers to create an outdoor gathering space to reconnect with the land, and host small gatherings and storytelling sessions.

Reconnecting with the Land

TELUS Spark Science Centre acknowledges the traditional lands of the Niitsitapi (Blackfoot Confederacy), the Tsuutina, and the Îethka Nakoda. We are grateful for the caretakers of these Lands, also home to Métis Nation Region 3, and all who thrive where the Bow and Elbow Rivers meet.

Land Acknowledgement