Native American Heritage
The rich cultures, contributions and accomplishments of Native Americans are celebrated each November as we observe National Native American Heritage Month. Congress first issued a joint resolution in November 1990 authorizing the president to proclaim the month annually to pay tribute to our nation’s Native Americans. Alexandria’s history has long-standing ties to these Indigenous peoples.
Resources for Educators
Test your own competency on Native American History by taking this quiz! Take time to reflect on your results. Where can you continue to build your knowledge on Native American history and culture?
Check your language! We often, unintentionally, use words that can be seen as offensive to our Indigenous American community. Take a look at this resource to see where you may need to swap out some old phrases for something more inclusive.
- To build your own background knowledge, check out this video, Reclaiming Native Truth, highlighting some of the misrepresentations and erasure of Native Americans in our media and history.
- Archaeology and Alexandria's First People- Human occupation of the land to be known as Alexandria began thousands of years before Europeans arrived. Their stories, culture, and history matters. Check out some of the archeological artifacts found in our area that give us a peek into their lives.
- Use lessons ideas and resources from the Smithsonian Native American Museum Native Knowledge 360 for creating more inclusive learning opportunities all year. This link includes full lesson plans ready for implementation in your classroom.
- Grades K-3: Check out this read-aloud, Sharice’s Big Voice, to inform students on how to use their voice to help their community and learn about a current Native leader in our society.
- Grades 4-8: Check out this instructional guide on teaching Indigenous perspectives towards the holiday of Thanksgiving.
- Grades 9-12: Here’s a lesson on the Native people of the Chesapeake Region!
- Have students read the article on pages 6-14 and discuss using the questions on page 5.
- Check out these resources for finding fiction and non-fiction books about the Native American experience that are written and vetted by Native American authors to ensure that the resources include multiple points of view.
- Check out this page that gives strategies to teach about seven Native books, including infusing literacy topics such as compare and contrast or exploring themes.
- Use this tool to learn more about the different indigenous tribes from the land we are currently on and across the world.
- Review this land acknowledgement with your students and have a discussion around why it is important to acknowledge the history of a land that you currently occupy.
National Native American Heritage Month is celebrated in November to honor the heritage and accomplishments of our continent’s first inhabitants.
The rich cultures, contributions and accomplishments of Native Americans are celebrated each November as we observe National Native American Heritage Month.
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