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By Eliza Jones (Koyukon Athabascan), 2009
(This is shortened version of a longer essay from the Smithsonian book Living Our Cultures, Sharing Our Heritage: The First Peoples of Alaska.)
Sea, Land, Rivers
When I was growing up in the 1940s and ’50s, our family moved in every season – to spring camp for ducks and muskrats, to fish camp in summer, and to hunting and fur-trapping sites during fall and winter. That kind of traveling life was once universal in Athabascan country, from the Arctic Circle to Cook Inlet in Alaska and across the western interior of Canada. It’s a vast territory, hundreds of thousands of square miles covered by boreal spruce and birch forest. The rivers that cross it were highways for dog sledding in winter and canoe voyages in summer. Today the rivers, along with air and snow machine travel, still link our scattered communities, but roads reach only a few.
Athabascan peoples are an ancient family that spread out across the land and gradually grew apart. Koyukon, Gwich’in, Han, Holikachuk, Deg Hit’an, Upper Kuskokwim, Tanana, Tanacross, Upper Tanana, Dena’ina, and Ahtna communities occupy different areas of interior and southern coastal Alaska. Their languages share the same complex grammar yet have developed different vocabularies. The people have varying subsistence practices, customs, ceremonies, and clan structures. The Eyak, who live on the southern Alaskan coast around the mouth of the Copper River, are more distant relatives.
In Athabascan belief, everything around us has life. The land and trees have spirits, and we treat them with respect. If we need to cut a tamarack, which has the best wood for making fish traps, it is Koyukon courtesy to explain our need to the tree and to leave an offering of a bead or ribbon behind. Animals and fish are given the same kind of care. Before bringing a mink carcass into our cabin, my mother or stepfather would rub its nose with grease so that its spirit would not be offended by the human scent inside. If they trapped a fox, they put a bone in its mouth, because the animal was seeking food when it met its death.
Community and Family
Western cultural influence came to Athabascan country in the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries when Russian fur traders set up forts in southern Alaska and the Hudson’s Bay Company built a post at Fort Yukon. Later in the century, the U.S. government and the Alaska Commercial Company took over from the Russians. The gold rushes of the 1880s and 1890s brought a flood of miners, settlers, and traders into the region. Our communities became less nomadic, more tied to trapping and a cash economy, and increasingly dependent on clothing, guns, food, and tools from the company stores. Through the efforts of missionaries most Athabascans adopted Christianity by the early 1900s. The twentieth century brought new technologies, mass media and Western schools where the teaching was in English only.
One of the biggest changes in my lifetime has been in the way that our children learn. I grew up in an oral tradition in which all our teachers were family and kin. Story telling time, as we called it, began in October after freeze-up. We would be home in our small cabin, chores finished for the day, our mother sewing by the light of an oil lamp. My stepfather would tell a kk’edon ts’ednee, a story in our language about ancient times when animals were human beings. It would include a lot of repetition to make it easier to learn and remember and a lesson about living in harmony with nature and people. Before he continued the next night, we had to repeat the story back to him, line by line. At other times we listened while adults talked and reminisced but were not allowed to interrupt. If we had a question we asked our grandmother or someone else about it later.
I was taught to read and write in English by my mother, Josie Peter Olin, who was educated as a child at the Allakaket Episcopal mission school. I was fourteen when the first one-room government school was built in our village, and I attended it for three years to finish the work of all twelve grades. I moved to Koyukuk to marry Benedict Jones, and there we raised our children. I worked as a volunteer health aide, and he was village Chief. In 1970 we moved to Fairbanks, where I worked at the Alaska Native Language Center editing a Koyukon Athabascan dictionary compiled by Jules Jetté, a Jesuit priest who came to the region in 1898 and learned to speak our language fluently. That dictionary turned into my life’s work. It contains detailed information about Koyukon culture as well as language, including knowledge that no longer exists in our communities. After we retired and came back to Koyukuk, I taught Koyukon in the school, hoping that a new generation would know and continue our culture despite the huge changes and challenges that affect their young lives.
Ceremony and Celebration
Our midwinter celebrations take place between Christmas and New Year’s. There are church gatherings, children’s programs, snowshoe races, dogsled races and dances. On New Year’s Day we finish with a celebratory potlatch. People save and prepare special foods and make new clothing and beaded moccasins to wear for the dances. Spring Carnival takes place in early April at the end of beaver trapping season. We do a lot of traveling to other villages to share in their celebrations. It’s a wonderful and exciting time, with high-stakes dogsled races, snowshoe competitions, ice-picking contests, Athabascan fiddling and dancing every night.
Today, Athabascan communities hold potlatches on various occasions. Some are informal festivities to celebrate holidays, and others are formal and spiritual occasions to recognize turning points in the lives of community members. Potlatches can mark a first successful hunt, a homecoming, recovery from an illness or settlement of a grievance.
The most important and universal events are memorial potlatches held a year or more after a death to honor the memory of the deceased and to repay those who assisted the family during their time of grief. These are the helpers who built the casket, dug the grave, provided food for the vigil or sewed traditional clothing to dress the body. To prepare for a memorial potlatch, the hosts make, buy and gather large quantities of gifts and food. Often several families join together to share the financial burden. Hosts are not trying to show off their wealth. It is our way of thanking those who generously gave service. The protocols, songs, and dances for memorial potlatches vary among the different Athabascan peoples, yet the fundamental idea of the whole community marking the passage of a human soul to the world beyond is the same for all.
In Koyukuk, a memorial potlatch takes place over a three-day period. Residents and guests from other villages arrive with food for a gathering in the community hall. Friends and relatives sing songs they have composed for the deceased to commemorate his or her unique accomplishments, personality and service to others, and with the songs there is dancing. It is an emotional and difficult time for the family. To lift their spirits everyone joins afterward in singing old familiar songs and dancing to fiddle music or rock and roll. On the last day all of the guests sit down for a feast of special foods, including dishes that the deceased person most enjoyed. After the meal the hosts distribute gifts to everyone in attendance, with the finest presents reserved for the funeral helpers and composers of memorial songs.
Tags: Athabascan, Alaska Native, Indigenous, Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center in Alaska
Alaska is home to over 100,000 Indigenous residents who represent twenty distinctive cultures and languages. The map shows cities, towns and villages where most people live today, but depicts Alaska Native territories as they existed in about 1890, before the main influx of Euro-American settlers.
Map information is courtesy of Michael Krauss, Igor Krupnik, Ives Goddard and the Alaska Native Language Center (University of Alaska Fairbanks). Map courtesy of the Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center.
A collection of resources about Ancient China and artifact examples.
This is a collection of my favorite items fromIndiana Historical Society collections.
Language is the very first tool that we use to understand the ideas that we are trying to share. But what about the monuments, art, and songs that we have created to share our ideas with one another? This exploration will focus on how American culture founded on the mixing of ethnicities and experiences used the skills and talents of its members to reveal its faults and celebrate its wonder and imagination. This collection focuses on the identities and expressions of 1st Nations People, African American, and White American cultures. There are so many other cultures that have contributed to this nations story, this is just one exploration of many that we should embark on to tell our stories of who we are as a people and a nation. This exploration will give students a way to examine the history of those around them, but also their place within this most extravagant quilt of this country.
- The purpose of this activity is to give students a better understanding of the American Indian identity of the United States as foundational to understanding this land. From that foundation they will journey through the musical/dance expressions of those who came to be known as White Americans and African Americans, who came to inhabit the US and through them some of the historical/contemporary realities and perspectives that make up a part of our society.
Please follow the lesson plan laid out at the beginning of the collection to see the best way to use it. #goglobal
This Women's History collection contains photographs, documents, and other materials from Indiana Historical Society archival collections that pertain to the history of women's rights and interests in Indiana. Some of the materials represented in this digital collection include Indianapolis Woman's Club Records, League of Women Voters of Indiana Records, Propylaeum Records, as well as other organizational records and personal papers such as those of May Wright Sewall. Materials date from the late 1800s through the present day.
This interdisciplinary collection explores the idea of a manifesto through the framework of High School Visual Art, Language Arts and History. Inspired by the Hirshhorn Museum and Sculpture Garden's "Manifesto: Art x Agency" exhibition, this collection examines the ideas of historical manifestos while also examining whose voices are historically absent, and how they can be amplified in the future. Just as each generation of artists created manifestos to challenge the status quo, this generation of students can be empowered to do the same. #GoGlobal
Using this Collection:
- Use the “Unit Outline” to see how each lesson/activity is organized. The “Introduction to Manifestos” lesson and corresponding artwork provide focused activities for use in the classroom, while the rest of the collection serves as suggestions and ideas for deepening thinking and questioning, culminating in a student-produced manifesto.
- Detailed suggestions on how to implement the learning activities are found in the "information" section of each of the Activity Tiles as well as the Project Zero Thinking Routine Tiles.
- Notes regarding the use of each Project Zero Thinking Routine are documented as annotations within each individual Thinking Routine tile and provide specific instructions on how align these routines with this collection.
Global Competence Connection:
- Students “recognize perspectives” by analyzing how manifestos and movements have championed certain voices over others, and contextualizing their own experiences within a broader historical and global context.
- Students “communicate their ideas” through the creation of a manifesto that demonstrates their unique perspective.
Using the manifestos and artworks in this collection as a foundation, you can use other content specific texts for your subject area and unique classroom demographics. Some ideas include:
“The Origin of the Species” by Charles Darwin
“The Communist Manifesto” by Friedrich Engels and Karl Marx
“United States Declaration of Independence” by Thomas Jefferson, Benjamin Franklin, John Adams, Robert R. Livingston, Roger Sherman
“Universal Declaration of Human Rights” by The United Nations
Welcome to the Grade 4 Beliefs Unit Collection. Please enjoy. Below there is information about:
- How the lesson was used specifically at Washington International School (WIS) in Washington DC in 2019
- The role of STEAM at WIS
Additionally, within the collection, the markers will help guide the teacher through each component. The collection is broken up into: Educating the teacher team (preparing for the unit), STEAM teacher resources, Student activities, and Student learning extensions.
Enjoy and all feedback is welcomed.
Washington International School is an International Baccalaureate (IB), Primary Years Program (PYP). I am the STEAM Specialist who integrates 21st century skill inquiry projects, hands on science and engineering, and digital tools/technology. This collection is to support many teachers who will contribute to content for this unit. The Language specialists, art teacher, design technology, STEAM Specialist and physical education.
STEAM at WIS:
My role will be to host an experience that role-plays early civilizations and their interactions with sun, moon, and stars. Students will interpret their experience and create a piece of art that demonstrates their translation of the experience. The follow up will be to help the students connect their experience with ancient cultures. Then, the conversation will further develop to challenge the students to think how science changes our understanding of our universe. The overall theme is to encourage students and give them confidence to explore various belief systems, challenge their own understanding of the world through their beliefs, experiences, and science.
These exercises scaffold learning to align student inquiry to the Social Studies standards:
- Distinguish between personal beliefs and belief systems (PYP Scope and Sequence Pg. 29)
- Define the elements of a belief system (creed, codes of behavior, rituals, community.) (AERO CC+ G5 p22 4.5.f)
- Identify the major religions of the world in terms of their beliefs, rituals and sacred texts. (referenced: AERO CC+ G6 p30 4.8.f)
- Reflect upon how beliefs affect the individual and society (PYP Scope and Sequence Pg. 29)
Important to know: The teachers at WIS took the students on two days of field trips to visit various areas of "worship" in the DC/MD/VA area: Buddhist Temple, Mosque, Jewish Temple, Catholic Church, and African American Christian Church. Students had worksheets to complete for each location that included observations of icons, the use of shapes in the visual devotional symbols, and to draw the various religious icons. After, they engaged in discussion about their experiences. If your school does not have the ability to do an elaborate field trip like this, we recommend having devotional leaders and/or parents visit as subject matter experts to demonstrate their systems of faith, icons, devotions, and symbols.
- I used this collection to train the teachers about the new thinking routines (Beginning slides)
- There are samples from students learning about Sun, Egyptian use of sun in their beliefs (art and architecture)
- Students looked at Egyptian sun use and modern NASA sun data to inspire them for their STEAM Challenge
- Their STEAM Challenge was to create a pyramid (cardboard) with a devotion (clay), and decorate with sun symbols (crayons/markers).
- Our students just completed a cardboard challenge (Cain's Arcade - check out on Youtube) so they were cardboard construction "experts". Therefore, they only had 40 minutes for their challenge. You will need to either have a lesson on cardboard construction before, or give them more samples and/or time. Hypothetically, this could be a 1/2 day project for students.
- The goal is then for students to look at other cultures and other NASA data (Incas (or other Native American tribes) African Tribes, and/or Australian Aborigines, etc. and have them do the same STEAM challenge (format) by creating a model structure decorated by symbols inspired by both indigenous symbols and modern NASA data (sun, stars, planets, or Earth's Moon). Therefore, they will have a "Maker Collection" that demonstrates various engineering styles as well as belief systems.
International Baccalaureate Transdisciplinary Unit of Inquiry: Who we are. Beliefs - An inquiry into the nature of the self; beliefs and values; personal, physical, mental, social and spiritual health; human relationships, including families, friends, communities and cultures; rights and responsibilities; what it means to be human.
Central Idea: Humans have common beliefs that attempt to answer life’s big questions.
- The main line of Inquiry this collection will align with is: Global religious beliefs and practices
The following subject teachers plan to do the following:
- Art = Beliefs and metaphors with clay
- Digital Technology = Building sacred structures
- STEAM = Engineering and Science of sacred structures globally and historically
Global thinking routines: Step In, Step Out, Step Back; Beauty and Truth; Unveiling Stories
STEAM Challenge: Students can further their inquiry from ancient beliefs with their experiences with modern organized religion into modern spirituality by analyzing the exhibition for Burning Man Festival. Students will complete a STEAM Challenge to build their own sacred structure that honors their own belief systems.
On February 12, 2018, the official portraits of President Barack Obama and First Lady Michelle Obama were unveiled at the Smithsonian's National Portrait Gallery. President Obama's portrait was created by artist Kehinde Wiley, who is known for his vibrant, large-scale paintings of African Americans posing as famous figures from the history of Western art. This portrait does not include an underlying art historical reference, but some of the flowers in the background carry special meaning for Obama. Mrs. Obama's portrait was created by artist Amy Sherald, who considers the former first lady to be someone “women can relate to—no matter what shape, size, race, or color. . . . We see our best selves in her.”
This collection includes the two portraits, in high resolution, so that learners can zoom in and out to carefully observe details. It also includes videos and articles about the portraits and their official unveilings. Additional supports include other works by the two artists and strategies for reading portraits. Portraits of the two sitters and other presidential portraits can be used for compare and contrast activities.
The Alaska Office of the Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center hosted a seminar with the Dena’ina Language Institute in 2010 at the Anchorage Museum. Elders Helen Dick and Gladys Evanoff shared their knowledge about Dena'ina heritage objects in the Smithsonian collections, using the objects as tools to teach the Dena'ina Athabascan language. They worked with language learners Karen Evanoff, Aaron Leggett and Michelle Ravenmoon and with linguists James Kari and D. Roy Mitchell to script and record new language learning videos, including the three videos presented here. Links to the museum objects discussed are included below.
Tags: Dena'ina, Athabascan, Indigenous, language, Alaska Native, dog pack, fire bag, snowshoes, Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center in Alaska
Older generations of Alaska Athabascan (Dene) peoples tanned moose hides using time-tested methods to make strong, supple leather for sewing beaded or quill-embroidered tunics, jackets, mittens, bags and moccasins, as well as everyday essentials such as dogsled harnesses. Because traditional tanning is time-consuming and requires technical knowledge that has declined in recent generations, most moose hides are now sent out to commercial tanneries for processing with synthetic chemicals. Commercial tanning produces a lower quality hide, but more importantly, it displaces the passing on of Athabascan tanning knowledge. Recognizing this, contemporary artists Joel Isaak (Dena'ina Athabascan) and Melissa Shaginoff (Ahtna Athabascan) have been learning traditional methods for tanning moose hides from elders Helen Dick (Dena’ina Athabascan) and Jeanie Maxim (Ahtna Athabascan) and adding tested, contemporary tools.
The Alaska office of the Arctic Studies Center worked with these committed artists and elders from September 2017 through June 2018 to carry out moosehide tanning work in communities and backyards in Kenai, Chickaloon, and Anchorage, and a sewing and beading residency at the Anchorage Museum. The collaboration resulted in the set of twenty-three educational videos presented here. Links to a selection of Athabascan objects from the Smithsonian collections made from moose hide are included below.
Tags: Alaska, Native art, museum, education, Indigenous, tan, tanning, moosehide, moose hide, smoking, sew, bead, Athabascan, Dena'ina, Ahtna, Dene, Melissa Shaginoff, Joel Isaak , Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center in Alaska
Classroom Activity Using Images of Immigration and Identity from the National Portrait Gallery, the New York Times, and the Smithsonian American Art Museum
Students can use the "What makes you say that?" and the "3 Ys" thinking routines to explore two modern portraits about identity and immigration from the National Portrait Gallery. The first thinking strategy asks students to look at a work of art for several minutes before answering two questions: "What's going on?" and "What do you see that makes you say that?" (See https://learninglab.si.edu/res... for more information.)
To further and deepen the discussion, I've included a link to a September 2016 New York Times Op-Doc entitled "4.1 Miles," about a coast guard captain on a small Greek island who is suddenly charged with saving thousands of refugees from drowning at sea. (If it doesn't show up easily, you can view the original video on Times Video at https://www.nytimes.com/video/opinion/100000004674545/41-miles.html.) I've also included two sculptures from the Smithsonian American Art Museum, an interview with Lisa Sasaki, head of the Smithsonian's Asian Pacific American Center, and resources from the University of Minnesota Libraries Publishing's Immigration Syllabus - Americans / Immigrants, Weeks 1-4.
You may wish to use the "3 Y's" thinking routine here as well, which asks students to consider the following questions:
1. Why might this [topic, question] matter to me?
2. Why might it matter to people around me [family, friends, city, nation]?
3. Why might it matter to the world?
(See https://learninglab.si.edu/res... for more information.)
#APA2018, #LatinoHAC, #EthnicStudies
This collection supports Unit 1: Precious Knowledge - Exploring notions of identity and community, of the Austin ISD Ethnic Studies Part A course.
This Smithsonian Learning Lab collection received Federal support from the Latino Initiatives Pool, administered by the Smithsonian Latino Center.
This collection brings together the New York Times Podcast 1619 (Episode 1, "The Fight for a True Democracy") and Smithsonian resources to support my 7th graders as we begin our unit on the American Civil Rights Movement. Later in the unit, the students will read March, a graphic novel based on the experience of Congressman John Lewis during the Civil Rights Movement. In order for the students to understand why the Civil Rights Movement was necessary, they must first understand the history that led to it. This collection does not, by any means, provide a complete or comprehensive history. The podcast provides an historical overview and will serve as a jumping off point for further research. The visual artwork, poetry, articles, and films included at the end serve to provide additional perspectives and opportunities for exploration. The students will develop their own research questions inspired by the thinking they've done throughout this collection and may use the additional resources provided to begin their independent research. A PowerPoint lesson on developing research questions is included.
The collection is organized into six lessons. The first five follow the same structure: students will explore a piece of visual art using Ten Times Two and Unveiling Stories, using the handout to record their ideas. Students will then listen to a portion of the podcast and use Think, Puzzle, Explore to document their thinking and record questions for further research. After listening to the podcast, they will return to their Unveiling Stories handout and add any new thinking. The sixth lesson brings the students from history to the present and asks them to consider the 2014 artwork New Age of Slavery by Patrick Campbell using Ten Times Two and Unveiling Stories. They will also listen to an NPR report on Black Lives Matter. Following the same format as previous lessons, they will document their thinking and questions about what they've heard using the Think, Puzzle, Explore handout and then return to their Unveiling Stories handout to add new ideas.
Please note that the podcast link (including daily listening timestamps), the Unveiling Stories handout, and the Think, Puzzle, Explore handout are all linked at the start of this collection, but will be used each day (see daily lesson plans).
Tahoe has become something of a symbol of the controversial balance between preserving and expanding into natural systems. Tahoe’s clarity has also been decreasing since at least 1968 from 100 foot visibility to about 70, with fine particles largely from urban expansion as one of the main causes, as well as introduction of invasive species. These photos and questions will help students to understand some of the reasons why Tahoe is becoming murkier, and can provoke relevant ideas about how to slow that loss of clarity down or even reverse it, so that future generations of people and native species can enjoy and rely on this magnificent lake for the foreseeable future, as they have in the past. Simply click the paperclip in each image to see the questions or prompts pertaining to that photo. This collection is ideal for a discussion based lesson among classmates or friends.
The Scaglione Antique and Vintage Office Museum
This collection features American made hole punches manufactured between the years 1874 and 1945. It is one of the the most complete collections of antique and vintage paper perforators in the world. It is interesting to note that some of the machines in this collection have not been seen in over 100 years. With the exception of wood block cuttings use in the advertisement process, these machines may be the last of their kind.
Hole punches have been around since the early 1870’s therefore, we have a great selection of antique and vintage machines for review and examination. The development of punches really took off in the early 1900’s and improvements followed. Many machines produced today are based on designs dating to 1912.
Today, we refer to this office machine as a hole punch. During the period dating from 1874 to the 1930's these machines were known as paper punch, hole punchers, perforators, or paper perforators. There was no real standard for a machine that punched hole.
In 1882 James Shannon filed for a patent for his paper file. While the patent is for a complete paper file, his patent described the paper punch that was part of his invention. After reviewing the patent one is left wondering if he was at a loss as to what to call his hole punch. As a result his invention is overlooked by many and the credit for the invention of the hole punch has been credited to someone else. (enclosed as a pdf at the bottom of this page - The first paper hole punch)
Even now, some examples are proving to be more desirable to collectors and are harder to find. The Globe No. 4 produced by Globe-Wernicke is one such machine that has a following of not only the punch collector, but by collectors of the machine age. This machine appears to draw the most interest from individuals wanting an old paper hole punch for the desk or collection. Another example is the early examples of the Tengwell which had a nicely scrolled plate and was mounted on a beautiful oak base.
Variants hold their own interest to many collectors. You will find the same machine, such as the Improved Hummer, was produced by different companies. Research has shown that many companies or their assets changed hands more than once during the century and that the machines were never improved upon or only minor changes were introduced, usually just parts on the machine or the manufacturers name.
When examining the early machines, it is easy to see these machines are historic. They were developed and manufactured during the mechanical revolution, Simple in design yet dependable. These 19th century designs are what you would expect of the era and this is where the concept of paper punches began.
Many paper hole punches have been lost to time, because of modernization, workmanship or better material. Examples such as the Sam’l Tatum’s Samson, Eclipse, and the No. 27 are just a few of those machines that were lost or discontinued. These machines were the work of Walter Mendenhall, long time employee of the Tatum Company. Compared to the punches today, these machines are complex and curious. Their mechanisms were unique in design and never copied by any other manufacturer.
A skateboarding pioneer, Cindy Whitehead turned pro at seventeen, skating both pool and half-pipe and becoming one of the top-ranked vert skaters while competing against the boys—something girls were not doing in the mid-1970s. But Whitehead had no choice but to wear boys’ shorts when competing; there were no skate products for girls in the 1970s.
She changed that in 2013 with her girl-empowered brand Girl is NOT a 4 Letter Word (GN4LW). Whitehead is especially supportive of young female skaters through the GN4LW skate team and products which are geared towards women and girls.
Whitehead’s signature phrase printed in gold on many of the GN4LW products personifies her independent spirit, "Live life balls to the wall. Do epic sh*t. Take every dare that comes your way. You can sleep when you’re dead."
This Learning Lab collection contains artifacts and resources that support the Conversation Kit on Cindy Whitehead's GN4LW Skateboard as part of the Smithsonian's American Women's History Initiative. #BecauseOfHerStory
This collection represents the age of industrialization in the eighteenth century.
The Alaska Office of the Smithsonian’s Arctic Studies Center hosted an Iñupiaq language and culture seminar in January 2011, bringing together eight fluent speakers: Sylvester Ayek, Bernadette Alvanna-Stimpfle, Alvira Downey, Herbert Foster Sr., Willie Goodwin Jr., Jana Harcharek, Faye Ongtowasruk and Rachel Riley. They met for four days to discuss Iñupiaq cultural heritage objects in the Smithsonian exhibition Living Our Cultures, Sharing Our Heritage: The First Peoples of Alaska at the Anchorage Museum.
During the seminar, the Iñupiaq language was documented, including three different dialects, and language and culture teaching materials were written for use in schools and homes throughout Alaska and beyond. Six objects from the Smithsonian collections – with links below – are featured in the guide and lessons presented here. These resources pair with six video lesons that offer teachers, students, parents and lifelong learners access to Iñupiaq language and lifeways.
Tags: Alaska, Native art, museum, education, language, Indigenous, Iñupiaq, Inupiaq, Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center in Alaska
The Alaska Office of the Smithsonian’s Arctic Studies Center hosted a St. Lawrence Island Yupik language and culture seminar in January 2012, bringing together seven fluent speakers: John Apassingok, Lydia Apatiki, Ralph Apatiki, Sr., Elaine Kingeekuk, Christopher Koonooka, Merlin Koonooka and Angela Larson. They met for five days to discuss Yupik objects in the Smithsonian exhibition Living Our Cultures, Sharing Our Heritage: The First Peoples of Alaska at the Anchorage Museum.
During the seminar, the St. Lawrence Island Yupik language was documented and language and culture teaching materials were written for use in schools and homes throughout Alaska and beyond. Twelve objects from the Smithsonian collections – with links below – are featured in the guide and lessons presented here. These resources pair with twelve video lessons that offer teachers, students, parents and lifelong learners access to the St. Lawrence Island Yupik language and lifeways.
Tags: Alaska, Native art, museum, education, language, Indigenous, St. Lawrence Island, Yupik, Smithsonian Arctic Studies Center in Alaska