The Acknowledgement and Recognition of Native Peoples Past and Present:

Refocusing on Indigenous Voices and Stories

Highlights from a workshop that took place on June 5, 2021

The history of Indigenous Peoples and cultures in our region is often misrepresented, told from a European/American-centered context, or even erased from our general curriculums. In this workshop, we will center Indigenous voices as we examine stories from pre- and post-contact periods that enrich our understanding of the past and help us empower students to grapple with this history’s complex legacies.

The questions brought up during this workshop included:

  • What are some examples of European-American centered misconceptions about Native Peoples and the contact period in our region that highlight larger themes of exclusion, erasure and the fight for acknowledgement and cultural preservation?
  • How can critical examination of sources from the region’s past as well as contemporary voices in the local Indegenous community inform our understanding of how to approach this topic with our students?

While you are welcome to watch the entire workshop, as it was recorded on Zoom (except for the break out sections), here are some specific resources that may be useful for designing lesson plans.

Massachusetts seal classroom worksheet.

Danielle Filiatrault: Elementary social studies- activity plan with worksheets interrogating MA seal.

Thumbnail for the slideshow "Imagery Around Hannah Duston and How We View History."

Brian Sheehy’s slideshow “Imagery Around Hannah Duston and How We View History.” Discussion of the slide show can be found at 1:02:50 of the workshop’s video.