November is Native American Heritage Month, and there are so many wonderful ways to learn about Native American heritage. There are many museums throughout the country with authentic Native American exhibits. One of my favorite exhibits is at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, Illinois. My class visits the Pawnee earth lodge each year for an authentic hands on tour of a real Pawnee earth lodge. Before and after our visit, we continue our studies of Native American heritage. Here are five great ways you can do the same in your classroom.
Have your students write out skits, or use reader’s theater to recreate important moments in Native American history. One fun thing to recreate would be members of the Navajo tribe creating a code which allowed the American army to successfully communicate across radio waves during World War II.
Create Native American Dioramas
After studying Native Americans, have students create visual representations of their favorite Native American group. Students can then share their dioramas with the rest of the class.
Since Totem poles were originally similar to family crests, have students create their own telling their family’s story. I recently wrote a blog describing how to have your students make this totem pole, feel free to read it here.
Writing About Native American Life
Have students write a story about what daily life was like for a tribe or group of Native Americans. Have students write a story describing the family totem pole they designed in the above example. There are so many creative writing ideas that go along with a Native American unit.
Create Native American Pop Up Books
I love having my students create pop up books of our studies. They are another engaging way for students to read and write more about their studies. They are also a great way for students to display their learning during Native American Heritage month.
More Fun Ideas
Check out my full Native American Bundle that provides rich informational text to help students learn more about four different Native American groups. The bundle also allows them to create these beautiful pop up books. For more ideas for your Native American Unit, check out my post on Five Things to Remember When Teaching Your Native American Unit.
For more interesting ideas, check out the blogs below.