A Kid's Guide to Native American History: More Than 50 Activities

A Kid's Guide to Native American History: More Than 50 Activities

by Yvonne Wakim Dennis, Arlene Hirschfelder
     
 

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Hands-on activities, games, and crafts introduce children to the diversity of Native American cultures and teach them about the people, experiences, and events that have helped shape America, past and present. Nine geographical areas cover a variety of communities like the Mohawk in the Northeast, Ojibway in the Midwest, Shoshone in the Great Basin, Apache in the

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Overview

Hands-on activities, games, and crafts introduce children to the diversity of Native American cultures and teach them about the people, experiences, and events that have helped shape America, past and present. Nine geographical areas cover a variety of communities like the Mohawk in the Northeast, Ojibway in the Midwest, Shoshone in the Great Basin, Apache in the Southwest, Yupik in Alaska, and Native Hawaiians, among others. Lives of historical and contemporary notable individuals like Chief Joseph and Maria Tallchief are featured, and the book is packed with a variety of topics like first encounters with Europeans, Indian removal, Mohawk sky walkers, and Navajo code talkers. Readers travel Native America through activities that highlight the arts, games, food, clothing, and unique celebrations, language, and life ways of various nations. Kids can make Haudensaunee corn husk dolls, play Washoe stone jacks, design Inupiat sun goggles, or create a Hawaiian Ma’o-hauhele bag. A time line, glossary, and recommendations for Web sites, books, movies, and museums round out this multicultural guide.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"A wealth of information and activities for classroom teachers or parents creating a home learning program."  —Kirkus Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 3–6—This two-in-one history and activity book does an excellent job of explaining Native American history in easy-to-understand language while stressing the differences between and diversity among tribes. The book is divided by region (including maps of each one): Northeast, Southeast, Midwest, Plains, Great Basin and Plateau, Southwest, Pacific States, Alaska, and Hawaii. Activities are kid-friendly (a few have adult supervision required) and encourage exploration of the text (such as creating a Delaware story bag, trying a Gros Ventre-inspired hands game, playing Washoe stone jacks). Clear illustrations accompany each activity. An introductory note is careful to explain that no ceremonial objects or clothing are included, and children are discouraged from "playing Indian," thus promoting cultural sensitivity. Brief biographies of famous, modern-day Native peoples are generously included, thus reinforcing the fact that Native American history is still being made. Pronunciations of tribal names and other Native words are included throughout. A lengthy list of museums, cultural-resource centers, and festivals is appended, as is a substantial suggested reading list. A top-notch resource for classroom use or independent study.—Madeline J. Bryant, Los Angeles Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
More a guide for teachers and parents than for kids, this comprehensive volume offers much information about Native cultures past and present. A timeline, sidebars, lists, maps and a variety of projects and activities involve readers in a broad learning experience, though in trying to cover so much ground about so many Native groups in the introduction and first chapter, the volume starts overly broad and didactic. In the many activities offered, the authors do not include the making of ceremonial objects or clothing, as they don't want to encourage children to "play Indian," which is offensive to Native people. However, this spirit seems contradicted in such activities as puppet shows, crafting a Seminole design patchwork baseball cap, sculpting a Pueblo storyteller doll and making an Ojibway seasons apron. Still, the book includes a wealth of information and activities for classroom teachers or parents creating a home learning program. (glossary, list of Native American museums and cultural centers, list of festivals and powwows, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 7-10)

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781556528026
Publisher:
Chicago Review Press, Incorporated
Publication date:
11/01/2009
Series:
A Kid's Guide Series
Edition description:
Original
Pages:
256
Sales rank:
748,316
Product dimensions:
8.40(w) x 10.90(h) x 0.60(d)
Age Range:
7 - 9 Years

Meet the Author

Yvonne Wakim Dennis is the outreach director for Nitchen, Inc., a support agency for indigenous families, and the Nitchen Children's Museum of Native America. She is the coauthor of Native Americans Today with Arlene Hirschfelder. Arlene Hirschfelder is the author of numerous books on Native Americans, including Native Americans: A History in Pictures and Rising Voices: The Writings of Young Native Americans. She has been a consultant for the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian.

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