Stolen Lives: The Indigenous Peoples of Canada and the Indian Residential Schools

Examine the Indian Residential Schools and their long-lasting effects on Indigenous Peoples of Canada.

This content is also available in French. View the French version of the Stolen Lives book.


"All our children have a right to the truth--the whole truth. Stolen Lives can help them learn that truth, and explore new pathways to ongoing reconciliation." - Dr Marie Wilson, Commissioner of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Canada

Stolen Lives is a program that walks students and teachers through an examination of the devastating legacy of Indian Residential Schools. Students make the essential connection between the history of Canada and their world today.

Using Facing History's results-driven methodology, students will:

  • Explore the spectrum of history and human behavior
  • Reflect on the choices they confront today in their own lives
  • Explore ways to engage students in meaningful reconciliation in response to the TRC’s Calls to Action.
The Stolen Lives digital resource is organized into chapters just like the Facing History print book. The table of contents allows you to browse the themes and topic of each chapter quickly. 
Purchase our publication in print to use with your students or download as a PDF. 
Our two-week unit outline is currently being revised. Please contact [email protected] for more information.

Hear from students and educators in the excerpts below

"I think that learning about the Canadian Indian Residential Schools helped me to realize many things about myself. . .I became more emotionally aware of the situations faced by others in my country rather than simply factually aware. It also enhanced my learning of Canada as a country and the relationships that our country has with our own people. I think this is really important because through learning about this I realized that reconciliation is such an important part in terms of healing our nation." - Audrey S., student at Cameron Heights Collegiate Institute

"This is a sensitive subject to deliver and I feel that this resource lays things out in a way that kids understand and teachers can feel comfortable delivering the content. . .In the classroom, as you know, we are faced with the challenge of overcoming the biases that kids sometimes bring from home to school. When discussing the content from Stolen Lives I have witnessed those barriers being broken down. Not so just by the teacher, but more often, by other students voicing their opinion and challenging their peers. This is where I have seen the greatest impact. Ignorance and bias is often a result in lack of understanding. Stolen Lives gives accurate, researched information with testimonials so that my students can better put themselves into the shoes of the victims." - Ryan Roy, Lakehead School District

Learn new teaching strategies and receive personalized coaching to tackle this sensitive topic.


Facing History and Ourselves provides hands-on workshops and seminars that model the organization's unique pedagogical approach and encourage discussion and collaboration among educators. Teachers continue receiving support from our program associates after attending our professional development events.

Stolen Lives In The News

November 15, 2021

Facing History and Ourselves announces that Jill Garling will succeed Julie Abrams Leff as Chair of the Board of Directors.

April 30, 2021

Our updated look retains our heritage but in a digitally-optimized design that will stand out in a crowd, amplify our voice, and reach new audiences.

January 11, 2019

Check out this collection of our top offerings from 2018. The classroom resources, events and learning opportunities are still relevant and engaging today. 

May 09, 2017

High school students from five schools across the GTA gathered at the Native Canadian Centre of Toronto on Tuesday April 25th to present ideas at a community summit on how to integrate Indigenous culture at their schools.

The community summit was the final stage of...

April 04, 2017

Kim Wheatley, an Anishnaabe and descendant of residential school survivors, recently spoke to students at Peel schools using Facing History's Stolen Lives resource.

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