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Native American Voices: The People – Here and Now


This seminar will be taught at the Penn Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology, and is inspired by the new exhibition Native American Voices: The People – Here and Now which will open at Penn Museum on March 1, 2014. The exhibition introduces contemporary Native American leaders and concerns in Indian country today, against the backdrop of Penn Museum’s remarkable Native American collections. The course will ask the following questions: What is the status of Native Americans in our country today? What issues are of concern in Indian country now? And, who are some of the current leaders? Topics to be explored include Native American sovereignty, language preservation, the importance of sacred places, the significance of ongoing commemorations and celebrations, and economic and health initiatives. Teachers will have the opportunity to explore a variety of tribes and topics and to become familiar with Native American material culture through hands on experience.
Teachers can create their own curriculum in relation to, or independent of, the five year exhibition. Teachers of social studies and history will find this topic especially useful.

Unit TitleAuthor


The Lenni-Lenape People: Yesterday and Today

Terry Anne Wildman
Keywords: NAGPRA, Native American Voices Exhibit, Lenni-Lenape People, History

Children of the Earth: Native American Identity, Sacred Places and Ties to the Landscape

Erin Bloom
Keywords: Native American issues, landscape, sacred places, anthropology

Investigation of Pueblo History and Pottery for the Spanish Classroom

Matthew Byrne
Keywords: Native American, Foreign Language, Spanish pueblo, New Mexico, pottery, Pueblo revolt, Art, ceramics

The Spirits Still Among Us: Native American Poets and the Voices of History in the Present Tense

Sydney Hunt Coffin
Keywords: Native American, History, Identity, voice, poetry

The Navajo Code Talkers

Richard P. Holmes
Keywords: Native American, World War II, Navajo, Code Breakers

Native American Music and Living Legends

Cynthia Cozette Lee
Keywords: Native American music, History, traditional, percussion instruments, crossover, contemporary, biographies

The Seminole and African Collaboration: An Alliance for Survival

Keysiah M. Middleton
Keywords: Zachary Taylor, Micanopy, Micconuppe, Mikasuki, Native American History, Luis Fatio Pacheco, freedom fighters, Geechee, Gullah, History, John Caesar, John Horse, La Florida, Seminole maroons, Seminoles, St. Augustine, St. John Slave Revolt, Thomas Sidney Jesup, Tuskegee, Wild Cat, Seige of Camp Izard, Second Battle of Withlacoochee, Osceola, Negro Fort Massacre, runaway slaves, First Battle of Withlacoochee, Francis L. Dade, Andrew Jackson, American History, Alachua chief, African American History, Abraham, Asi Yahola, Battle at Hatcheelustee Creek, Edmund P. Gaines, Duncan Clinch, Destruction of St. John’s Sugar Plantations, Dade’s Massacre, Battle at Jupiter Inlet, Colonial Florida, Coacoochee, Battle of Lockahatchee, Battle of Okeechobee, Battle of Wahoo Swamp, Ben Bruner, Black Seminoles

The Geography of the Lenape Diaspora

Peter Morse
Keywords: Lenape, diaspora, Delaware

The Cherokee Tribe and Their Trail of Tears

Tiffany Moyer
Keywords: mixed numbers, Native American, literacy, fractions, Geography, History, Trail of Tears, Cherokee

Fact Versus Fiction: Comparing Primary and Secondary Sources about Christopher Columbus and the Colonization of the New World With a New Perspective on Thanksgiving

Kathleen Radebaugh
Keywords: social media, secondary sources, Thanksgiving, writing, Native Americans, primary sources, activism, Christopher Columbus

The Progression from Ancestral Pueblo to Pueblo of Today

Cara Wallin
Keywords: four corners, History, Pueblo Indians, Ancestral Pueblo, Culture, cliff dwellings

Whispering Rivers: Whatever Happened to the Indians of Pennsylvania?

Pat Mitchell-Keita-Doe
Keywords: Native American, Native American History, Native American issues, Historical Context, History, Native Americans, Pennsylvania History, Political Activism, Political thought, political unrest, American History