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Indigenous Peoples' Curriculum Day and Teach-In

  • National Museum of the American Indian 4th St. and Independence Ave. SW Washingtion, DC (map)

Event Details

Join the National Museum of the American Indian and the D.C. Area Educators for Social Justice (a project of Teaching for Change) for a back to school teach-in on Indigenous Peoples'. Engage with curriculum and strategies for teaching students about Indigenous Peoples' history and life today. The speakers and workshops will include classroom resources from Native Knowledge 360° and the campaign to abolish Columbus Day. Coffee and lunch are provided along with free classroom resources.

More about the Keynote

 Sarah Shear

Sarah Shear

Dr. Sarah Shear is an assistant professor of social studies education at Penn State University-Altoona. Her research focuses on teaching and learning K-12 social studies within Indigenous contexts. Sarah's research includes examining race and settler colonialism in social studies state standards and textbooks, teacher education, film, and qualitative research methodologies.

Her work is published in Theory and Research in Social Education, Journal of Social Studies Education, and Qualitative Inquiry. Sarah's work is also featured in the books Race Lessons: Using Inquiry to Teach about Race in Social Studies, Cinematic Social Studies: A Resources for Teaching and Learning Social Studies with Film, and Doing Race in Social Studies: Critical Perspectives. She co-edited (Re)Imagining Elementary Social Studies: A Controversial Issues Reader, published in 2018, and is co-editing a forthcoming book, Marking the Invisible: Articulating Whiteness in Social Studies Education and Research.

Workshop Titles and Descriptions:

Building Critical Literacy in your classroom: American Indian Children’s Literature.

What makes a good book for your classroom? Learn more about what to look for and how to assess American Indian children’s books for accuracy, authority, and perspective. This session, targeting Pre-K through 4th-grade educators, will cover some essential understandings about American Indian cultures and develop your  Critical Literacy about bias in children’s literature as it relates to how indigenous people’s history is presented in schools and books. NMAI’s Teacher Advisory Group member Katie Blomquist (4th-grade teacher at Sunrise Elementary) will co-present with Sarah Shear.

What Does it mean to Remove a People?

Learn more about the U.S. government’s American Indian removal policies of the 19th century and its lasting effects on Native nations. Explore our online resource, Native Knowledge 360°, that examines first-person perspectives from Native American communities through documents, maps, and multimedia resources. This session will be facilitated by both NMAI Teacher Advisory Group member Andy Paparella (7th Grade Social studies teacher at Kenmore Middle School) and Native Knowledge 360° Manager, Ed Schupman.

Inspiring Civic Engagement: Engaging Students Through Facilitated Dialogue

The NMAI has partnered with the International Coalition of Sites of Conscience, a worldwide network of places dedicated to remembering past struggles for justice and addressing their contemporary legacies, to develop new school programs rooted in the methodology of dialogue. Through these programs, the museum’s cultural interpreters invite students with varied experiences and differing perspectives to engage in an open-ended conversation with the express goal of personal and collective learning. Programs aim to foster critical thinking, to strengthen collaborative relationships, and to build respect for the rights and duties of a diverse citizenry. Learn more about educators dialogue tool kit.

‘Don’t Take Our Voices Away’: A Role Play on the Indigenous Peoples’ Global Summit on Climate Change

Participants will be introduced to a role play developed by Julie Treick O’Neill and Tim Swinehart of Rethinking Schools. The lesson is inspired by the Indigenous Peoples’ Global Summit on Climate Change, held in Anchorage, Alaska, in April 2009, when representatives from around the world exchanged experiences and observations from the front lines of climate change and agreed on a unified strategy for leading a worldwide campaign. In this role play students are divided into small groups, each of which represents an indigenous group that attended the Anchorage Summit; the six groups include the Dine (Navajo), Yup’ik (Alaska Native), the Bambara of sub-Saharan Africa, and indigenous groups from Kiribati (central Pacific islands), the Caribbean, and the Amazon. The goal of the Summit is for students representing the six indigenous groups to develop a list of action items to present to the U.N. In the workshop, participants will experience a part of the lesson and brainstorm ways to use it in their classroom. The lesson is available for free teacher access at the Zinn Education Project website. This session will be facilitated by Teaching for Change staff member Faye Colon.