Discussion in 'Preschool' started by Grammy Teacher, Oct 24, 2013.
Oct 24, 2013
Do you teach 4 and 5 year olds about Native Americans? Why or why not?
I would not. I wouldn't explicitly teach about specific groups as they cannot appreciate and understand it. Exposure is different, of course.
Exposure...do you have an example?
Reading books with Native American characters or NA dolls for play for example. Not teaching about them, but simply exposing students to them.
I used to. I have read so much about how inaccurate our history is that I would have to think about it before doing so in this day and age. I used to have a Thanksgiving feast that I thought was accurate. It include a list of foods that were "really" served at the first Thanksgiving. Now I am not sure that a first Thanksgiving ever happened.
As a parent to Native American children (although very light) I did teach it. I also have a difficult time with the myth of Thanksgiving....so I used my time with the children to talk about what foods were available and things. We learned how one would live "before towns" which will later become history for the kids. There is an active Native American Science and Engineering group in our area and they have a community display and interactive event that I would encourage children to attend. It wasn't taught right or wrong, we didn't go into treaty issues or racism....but I think if the kids don't understand that everyone is important they will assume that everyone is like they see themselves. We also spent a lot of time through the year discussing the special differences between family cultures. Individual cultures....like Bobby's family is very musical while Larry's family is very outdoorsy....and what not.
Oct 25, 2013
As a former elementary art teacher, I chose themes from cultures that were not of western origins. I'd mix it up so sometimes I would chose from western cultures. From those themes, I would chose certain art styles, teach about that group's culture based around the art, and then have students develop their own interpretations of the art work. That was pretty much the only way to include reading and writing components into an otherwise project only based program.
I like all of your ideas. It just bugs me when I see other classrooms full of all that other stuff...Pilgrim Hats and Feathered Headbands, etc. I have never liked that approach. I have some good books to read (The Legend of Blue Bonnet) and some others that they like.
I think I might do some things from all different cultures in November.
Thanks everyone and keep the good ideas coming.
Grammy...we watched the scholastic thing they do around Thanksgiving (not at school) and it was interesting. You could check there as well...
ok Diz, thanks!
Here's the link
Nov 6, 2014
My school curriculum has a week for Native Americans. I'm really unsure how to present to my class of 3 year olds. I used to be a history teacher to middle and High school and am struggling to find activities that make sense.
Nov 7, 2014
I am Choctaw. I teach about Native Americans in several areas not just at Thanksgiving.