safe zone collage
The Learning Circles Project
tree collage
How we learned - The Circles

Here you will read about the learning circles we learned about.

You can read a selection of narratives about selected circles.
You can read summaries of what we learned in each community type: urban, rural and Indigenous. You can read snapshots of circles we learned about but did not study in depth.

In our initial scan, we discovered that learning circles are created for many purposes, and are organized in a great variety of community settings.  In Digby, Nova Scotia, The Fisheries Group was organized in cooperation with the Bay of Fundy Marine Resource Centre to learn about fisheries policy.  In Toronto, The Multicultural Women’s Group was organized at Doorsteps Neighbourhood Services, a community organization in North York, to provide a place where women who have recently immigrated to Canada can explore cultural and social issues.  In Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory, near Belleville, Ontario, The Family History Group was organized to learn about the tapestry of family histories in the community.

These groups are not always recognized as learning groups.  For example, The Fisheries Group is sometimes seen as an community action group.  The Multicultural Women’s Group is sometimes seen as a support group.  The Family History Group is sometimes seen as a hobby group.  But we discovered that learning was at the core of what these groups do.  Most fundamentally, this learning is about personal and social meaning.  More concretely, members of The Fisheries Group have learned to read complex research documents, participants in the Multicultural Women’s Group have learned skills for everyday living in their new country and participants in The Family History Group have learned about the roots of contemporary Mohawk culture. 

Click on the links below to read our narratives about the groups we worked with in depth:

Urban Circles Rural Circles Indigenous Circles
Multicultural Women's Group
Toronto, Ontario
Download PDF 375kb
The Bay of Fundy Marine Resource Centre
Digby, Nova Scotia
Download PDF 128kb
Family History Circle
Tyendinaga, Ontario
Download PDF 100kb
Parkdale Activity-Recreation Centre (PARC)
Toronto, Ontario
Download PDF 1.1mb
The Portfolio Group
Digby, Nova Scotia
Download PDF 325kb
Enaahtig Healing Lodge and Learning Centre
Victoria Harbour, Ontario
Download PDF 150kb
Health Action Theatre by Seniors (HATS)
Toronto, Ontario
Download PDF 220kb
Conway Workshop /DALA Group
Digby, Nova Scotia
Download PDF 175kb
Barrie Native Friendship Centre
Barrie, Ontario
Download PDF 120kb
Storyteller’s Group, Yonge Street Mission
Toronto, Ontario
Download PDF 150kb
New Tusket Women's Institute
New Tusket , Nova Scotia
Download PDF 200kb
Ardoch Algonquin First Nation and Allies (AAFNA)
Ardoch First Nation, Ontario
Download PDF 140kb
Toronto, Ontario
Download PDF 124kb
  Craft Circle, Toronto Council Fire
Toronto, Ontario
Download PDF 120kb
Adult Learning Group
Stratford, Ontario
Download PDF 220kb
Worker's Heritage Arts Centre (WHAC)
Hamilton, Ontario
Download PDF 175kb

Click on the links below to read summaries of each area we looked at:

Urban Summary
Download PDF 120kb
Rural Summary
Download PDF 100kb
Indigenous Summary
Download PDF 115kb

Click on the links below to see snapshots of all the groups we looked at:

Urban Snaps
Download PDF 44kb
Rural Snaps
Download PDF 60kb
Indigenous Snaps
Download PDF 632kb



Beginner's Guide
How we learned
What we learned
Who we are
Our Partners
and Funder
» » » » » » »
Metro Toronto Movement for Literacy National Literacy     Secretariat
National Indigenous Literacy Association
The Bay of Fundy Marine Resource Centre NALD