What Is Home?

What Is Home?

Larry Wright, Jr., recently completed his term limit as the Ponca Tribe of Nebraska's Tribal Chairman.

Cindy Renner is a Social Studies teacher for Lincoln Public Schools in Lincoln, Nebraska. She graduated from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln in 2005 with a degree in Secondary Education, endorsed in Social Sciences.

Date Posted: 
2013-04-30 00:00

Blog Series:

Editor's Note: This is an account from the curricula developers for the "Standing Bear's Footsteps" educational site. They talk about their experience at the National Council for the Social Studies Annual Convention this past November. We thought that this would be good launching point into the curricula they developed. The trial of Standing Bear opened in Omaha on April 30, 1879.

This session was presented as a three-hour clinic. We began our session with introductions and a question prompt of “What is ‘home’?”  Each participant shared, with one even highlighting that where she lived wasn’t her ‘home’. This was a perfect transition into the introduction, “What is ‘home’ for the Poncas?” Larry led a brief discussion about the historical aspects of the tribe and how the documentary, curriculum and the workshop sections of the project began to take shape. Then Cindy led an examination of the shift in social studies education—from content to skill-based curriculum, and from test to project based learning and assessment.  She explained the curriculum design and how it can be used in a multitude of ages and subject areas.  She showed the participants the different components of the website, and how it all worked. The participants were very excited and applauded the efforts of the project.

We took questions and then watched Chapters 1 and 2 of the documentary in their entirety. Two participants were in tears at the gripping story the documentary was putting forward.  Larry answered a few questions and then we walked through two sample activities from the curriculum. Cindy handed out a printed version of the curriculum so participants could view the activities up close. Then for Chapter 3 we used the Digital Learning Objective, to show the diversity of the movie and curriculum. Chapter 4 and 5 were shown in their entirety and the participants voiced how easy the documentary, website and curriculum documents were to use. We showed Chapter 6 and 7 and then Larry took several more questions about the tribe.

Cindy examined 21st Century Skills and Project Based Learning and how these skills for our youth, particularly Native youth, must be taught in order to be proficient in the media-heavy world we live in. We showed the Bright Eyes video on YouTube and then transitioned into the workshops. We linked in to YouTube and the videos that VisionMaker had posted on their YouTube account. We showed two samples of the videos and talked about the project as a whole and how to integrate this into a curriculum. 

Visit the Standing Bear's Footsteps Educational Site

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