On an outing in Nicola Valley, British Columbia, a First Nations family forages for herbs and mushrooms while the grandmother passes down her language and knowledge to her young grandchildren. Includes glossary.
The little girl in this story loves to visit Grandpa's farm where she and her cousins run through the fields, swing out the bar loft window and feed crab apples to the Appaloosa in the corral. They explore the root cellar and tiptoe into Grandpa's secret room to look at memories from the past.
When Shin-chi and his sister go off to his first year of Residential School in a cattle truck, she warns him of all the things he must not do. The days are long, he is very lonely and always hungry, but he finds solace down at the river with a gift from his father, a tiny cedar canoe. It seems like a very long time until the salmon swim upriver again and he can finally go home.
Shi-shi-etko, a Native American girl, spends the last four days before she goes to residential school learning valuable lessons from her mother, father, and grandmother, and creating precious memories of home.