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This lesson will give students a foundational awareness of the Indigenous, sovereign people groups who live in what is now known as Oregon—their history, their culture, and the issues that continue to impact them today. When undertaking the study of Indigenous people, it is important to begin with their long history on the land. Indigenous people have lived in Oregon for thousands of years, in established communities, with established social structures, languages, and cultures. They were—and are—deeply and inextricably connected to the land. It is also important to increase students’ awareness of the continued presence of Indigenous people groups in Oregon and to explore what it means to be a sovereign nation within the United States. This lesson will also help students begin to think about how the story of the American West (e.g., the Oregon Trail, westward expansion) has typically been told from a white settlers’ perspective and to consider how that history might look from the perspective of those whose ancestors were here for thousands of years before the settlers arrived. Finally, this lesson will enable students to identify the nine tribes in Oregon that are currently recognized by the federal government and to understand that all of Oregon was and still is Indian Country.
Social Science
Lower Primary
Material Type:
Lesson, Lesson Plan
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