Written by Sandra Lamouche, a Nehiyaw Iskwew (Cree woman) from the Bigstone Cree Nation in northern Alberta and illustrated by Azby Whitecalf, a Plains Cree character designer and illustrator based out of Saskatoon, Saskatchewan, Treaty 6 Territory.
Translated by Dolores Greyeyes Sand, a first-language speaker of Plains Cree (nêhiyawêwin), Dolores Greyeyes Sand has devoted her career to teaching and promoting Cree language and cultural literacy at every opportunity, proudly following the path laid by her late mother, Dr. Freda Ahenakew, CM, SOM.
BA-BOOM, BA-BOOM. That is the sound of belonging.
The drum represents the heartbeat of Mother Earth. We all belong to the earth and we all belong to the drum.
Nikosis grew up going to powwows with his family, happily immersed in music, dance and the sounds of the drum. But when he starts going to daycare, he doesn’t feel like he belongs. Nikosis cries every time his mother leaves him in the unfamiliar environment until, one day, she and the teachers use drums to help Nikosis find connection and comfort.
Inspired by her son’s experience—and her family's love of powwow music and dance—Indigenous educator and champion hoop dancer Sandra Lamouche shares this uplifting true story of the transformative effects of culturally safe and inclusive early childhood education. This book contains 14 Colour illustrations. Includes a glossary of Plains Cree kinship terms. Dual language (English & Plains Cree).