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American Indian Education

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Resources for Teaching Social Studies

This is an old list partially updated August 23, 2010

Some of the best sources for information on Native Americans are the writings of the many Native American scholars such as Francis LaFlesche (Omaha), Luther Standing Bear (Lakota Sioux), Ella Deloria (Yankton Dakota Sioux), D'Arcy McNickle (Salish), Bea Medicine (Yankton Dakota Sioux), Edward Dozier (Santa Clara Pueblo), Jack Forbes (Powhatan), Alfonso Ortiz (Tewa), and Vine Deloria, Jr. (Yankton Dakota Sioux). The 1977 American Indian Policy Review Commission opened its Final Report with the statement that "A history, once thought ancient and dead, has risen to challenge this generation of Americans."

It is important that Indian children get an Indian point of view in their classrooms. For instance, traditionally-oriented Indians do not believe their ancestors came from Asia over the Behring straights, many geographic sites have been renamed by whites, Indians have little to be thankful for on Thanksgiving, and Indian heros such as Tecumseh, Geronimo, and Chief Joseph were often the white man's enemies. Some useful books are listed below:

General books on Indians useful as resource books for teachers

America's Fascinating Indian Heritage. 1978. Pleasantville, NY: Reader's Digest.

Barreiro, Jose, ed. 1988. Indian Roots of American Democracy. (Special issue of the Northeast Indian Quarterly published by American Indian Program, 400 Caldwell Hall, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 14853). This special issue contains articles about how Benjamin Franklin and the other founding fathers were influenced by American Indian tribal democracy.

Brown, Dee. 1970. Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee: An Indian History of the American West. New York. Holt Rinehart & Winston

Debo, Angie. 1970. A History of the Indians of the United States. Norman, OK: University of Oklahoma.

Josephy, Alvin M. 1961. The Patriot Chiefs. New York: Viking.

Kehoe, Alice B. 1981. North American Indians: A Comprehensive Account. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall

Vogel, Virgil. 1972. This Country was Ours: A Documentary History of the American Indian. New York: Harper & Row. While this book is dated, it contains much useful information including a list of famous Americans of Indian descent past and present in the Appendix.

Weatherford, Jack. 1988. Indian Givers: How the Indians of the Americas Transformed the World. New York: Fawcett Columbine. This book describes the various contributions Native Americans have made to our modern civilization.

Children's books/series See also Recommendations and Sources for Native Children's Books

American Indian Stories Series. Raintree, 310 W. Wisconsin Avenue, Mezzanine Level, Milwaukee, WI 53203; 800/558-7264. New intermediate level biographical series with 12 title including biographies of Geronimo, Wilma Mankiller, John Ross, Sarah Winemucca, and Plenty Coup.

Childrens Press, 5440 North Cumberland Avenue, Chicago, IL 60656 publishes a "New True Book" series of reference books for the primary grades that includes The Apache, Aztec Indians, The Cherokee, The Cheyenne, The Chippewa, The Choctaw, The Hopi, The Inca, Indians, The Mandans, The Maya, The Navajo, The Nez Perce, The Pawnee, The Seminole, The Shoshoni, The Sioux, and The Tlingit. These books have authentic photographs for illustrations. At the same level they also publish Black Elk: A Man with a Vision and at a slightly higher level (grades 3-6) Wounded Knee, Geronimo, and The Blackhawk War.

Freeman, Russell. 1988. Buffalo Hunt. New York: Holiday House. Also by the same author, Indian Chiefs. (Int.)

Heros and Warriors Series. Sterling, 387 Park Ave. S., New York, NY 10016-8810; 800/367-9692. New intermediate/junior high level series of five books including American Indian Warrior Chiefs, Crazy Horse: Sacred Warrior of the Sioux, Chief Joseph: Guardian of the Nez Perce, Geronimo: Last Renegade of the Apache, and Tecumseh: Chief the Shawnee.

Hirschfelder, Arlene. 1987. Happily May I Walk: American Indians and Alaska Natives Today. New York: Scribners. (Int.)

Indians of North America. Chelsea House/Infobase Publishing. 9 Volumes.

Katz, William Loren. 1986. Black Indians: A Hidden Heritage. New York: Atheneum. (high school, describes the history of mixed black-Indian Americans)

Luling, Virginia. 1978. Indians of the North American Plains. Morristown, NJ: Silver Burdette. (jr. hi.)

Marrin, Albert. 1984. War Clouds in the West: Indians & Cavalrymen 1860-1890. New York: Atheneum. (jr. hi. up).

Native American Series, Silver Burdette Press, P.O. Box 1226, Westwood, NJ 07675-1226; 1/800-848-9500. Edited by Alvin Josephy, this series of six titles includes biographies of Geronimo, Tecumseh, Sequoyah, Hiawatha, Sitting Bull, and King Phillip. (int.)

Ortiz, Simon. 1988, revised edition). The People Shall Continue. San Francisco: Children's Book Press. A very simple history of Native American survival for primary children.

Payne, Elizabeth. 1965. Meet the North American Indian. New York: Random House. (Primary-Int.)

Yue, David and Charlotte. 1984. The Tipi: A Center of Native American Life. New York: Alfred A. Knopf. (Int.)

Other topics

Coe, Ralph T. 1977. Sacred Circles: Two Thousand Years of North American Indian Art. Kansas City: MO: Nelson Gallery of Art-Atkins Museum of Fine Arts.

Hanson, James A. 1975. Metal Weapons, Tools, and Ornaments of the Teton Dakota Indians. Lincoln: University of Nebraska.

Hunt, W. Ben. 1973. The Complete How-To Book of Indiancraft. New York: Collier Books.

Western Trading Post (catalog), 32 Broadway, Denver, CO 80209.

Pictures, maps, and other graphics

Dunn, Dorothy. 1968. American Indian Painting of the Southwest and Plains Areas. Albuquerque: University of New Mexico.

Wade, Edwin L., & Strickland, Rennard. 1981. Magic Images: Contemporary Native American Art. Norman: Philbrook Art Center and University of Oklahoma.

Native American Tribes map of United States with tribes listed.

Waldman, Carl (illustrations by Molly Braun). 1985. Atlas of the North American Indian. New York: Facts on File.

Rickman, David 1983. Plains Indians Coloring Book. New York: Dover.

Films/Videotapes and Posters

Children of the Long-Beaked Bird. Videotape of the daily life of a contemporary Crow boy. Bullfrog Films, Oley, PA 19547; 215/779 8226.

I Will Fight No More Forever. Feature film about flight of Chief Joseph and the Nez Perce from Idaho to Montana. Congress Video Group, South Plainfield, NJ 07080.

More Than Bows and Arrows. Film about the contributions of Indians to world culture. Camera One Productions, 8024 11th Ave. NE, Seattle, WA 98115; 206/524-5326.

The Trial of Standing Bear. Film about a Ponca chiefs flight from Oklahoma and his subsequent trial for leaving his reservation without permission. A viewers guide and book are available. Nebraska ETV Network, P.O. Box 83111, Lincoln, NE 68501; 402/472 3611.

Weatherford, Elizabeth, & Seubert, Emelia. 1981. Native Americans on Film and Video, vols. 1 & 2. New York: Museum of the American Indian (A listing with descriptions of about 400 films).

We Shall Remain 5 on-line PBS videos starting with After the Mayflower and ending with Wounded Knee

Teaching Guides See also Curriculum Sites

American Indian Cultural Lessons. 1989. Norman, OK: American Indian Institute, University of Oklahoma.

American Indian Education Handbook. Sacramento: California State Department of Education. There was an updated edition published in 1990.

>Oklahoma's Federally Recognized Indian Tribes. 1992. Oklahoma City: Oklahoma State Department of Education.

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