This Institute will engage twenty-five K-12 school teachers in the discovery of Native histories along a portion of the Lewis and Clark National Historic Trail (LCNHT), a National Park. Native curriculum designers from the Honoring Tribal Legacies project have helped shape the Institute and advise the Director in its organization. During our program, a few of them will have the opportunity to share their knowledge and expertise with the NEH Summer Scholars. The Institute will also involve key university faculty from Billings, Montana, and Bismarck, North Dakota (the two ends of the part of Trail we plan to traverse), plus knowledgeable elders from the Apsáalooke (Crow), Northern Cheyenne, Mandan, Hidatsa, Arikara, and Lakota tribes. Participants will also have the chance to work with noted faculty at two tribal colleges, one in Montana and one in North Dakota. These Native educators will share stimulating oral traditions about tribal history and explain the historical significance of fascinating archaeological sites, a battlefield, a sacred rock formation, museum artifacts, archival manuscripts, and additional historic landscapes located within American Indian reservations, plus significant state and national parks ranging across the region the NEH Summer Scholars will travel during a two-week journey of new discoveries.
A site along the LCNHT. Photo by Tommy LaVergne. NPS.
This intellectual expedition, like an extended Landmarks experience, will be capped by two seminars, one laying the conceptual groundwork and one summing up the significance of the real and metaphorical journey, while also supporting the design of vital new curricular materials to be served openly on the Internet by the end of the grant period. The combined seminars and journey of discovery will leave participants with exciting new ideas about the shared history of the West, an introduction to new sources about Native experiences, and fresh analytical methods for introducing to their students, preparing Institute participants to meet a nation-wide educational mandate to bring greater balance to our understanding of Native experiences and perspectives.
For further information, please see the following:
A view from along the Trail. National Park Service.
This institute is being funded by the National Endowment for the Humanities.
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