Heather Congdon Memorial Grant: Understanding Indigenous People, Genocide, and Resilience in New England and Beyond

  • School Year: 2019-2020
  • Applicants: Jessica Palliardi, Lead Teacher
  • School: Hall High School
  • Subjects: Social Studies

Understanding Indigenous People, Genocide, and Resilience in New England and Beyond consists of a six-part series infusing Indigenous History and Culture into Modern World History, Genocide Studies, and Introduction to Anthropology courses at Hall High School. The vast majority of Americans do not know a single Native American, cannot name a famous Native actor or politician, and have never learned the history of Indian boarding schools in the U.S. This project, above all else, will expose students to Native peoples, history, and modern-day issues. Native Educators from Akomawt Educational Initiative (Christopher Newell, endawnis Spears, and Dr. Jason Mancini) will be guest educators in classes throughout the 2019-2020 Academic Year. These guest teachers-in-residence have created a series of programs to provide students with, as they wrote in their curriculum, "a pathway for truly understanding Indigenous people, their histories and related concepts unique to the Native Northeast, including genocide and resilience." Over the six-part series, students will gain knowledge of indigenous lifestyles, music, specific history in New England, myths surrounding Thanksgiving, matrilineal societies, various forms of genocide, and resilience when faced with attempted erasure of their culture and intergenerational trauma.

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