Scholastic Explorer

Setting up the Activity in your Classroom:

There are three expeditions within the Native American Cultures online activity. As you plan your lessons, you may wish to print out any reading assignment pages and staple them into a book for individual students. Depending on time available, the grade level, and maturity level of each class, activities can be facilitated as independent work, collaborative group work, or whole class instruction.

If a computer is available for each student, students can work on their own. Hand out the URLs or write them on the board so students will have a guide through the activity.

If you are working in a lab, set up the computers to be on the desired Web site as students walk into class. If there are fewer computers than students, group the students by reading level. Assign each student a role: a "driver" who navigates the web, a timer who keeps the group on task, and a note taker. If there are more than three students per computer, you can add roles like a team leader, a team reporter, etc.

If you are working in a learning station in your classroom, break out your class into different groups. Have rotating groups working on the computer(s), reading printed field sites and field reports, holding smaller group discussions, researching and writing about local Native American cultures.

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Stimulate Background Knowledge with these related links:

Smithsonian Institution: National Museum of the American Indian
The Smithsonian's NMAI site provides an in-depth overview of their collection, including teaching resources, materials, and links to other sites.
A comprehensive portal site for Native American resources on the Internet.

The Anasazi Heritage Center, Dolores, Colorado
Provides teacher resources on the Ancestral Puebloan (or Anasazi) culture and other Native cultures in the Four Corners region.

The Burke Museum of Natural History and Culture, Seattle, WA
Features an exhibit, resources, traveling study collections and Teacher Guide on Native American Basketry and Native American cultures of the Pacific Northwest region

Elementary School Project on Native American Cultures
Example of 3rd grade project on Native American Cultures developed by a Germantown, MD, school

Internet Public Library
Includes lessons on Pueblo pottery

Native American Toys and Games
Interactive games from Native American cultures

Native American Book List (PDF)
Reading list on present-day Native Americans developed by the International Reading Association.

Indian Country Today
Online version of leading Native American publication in the United States. Includes topics of current interest or concern to Native peoples.

Boston Children's Museum
Includes guidelines and 10 basic questions for evaluating books, activities, materials on Native Americans

Map of American Indian Reservations (PDF)
Map from the U.S. Census Bureau.

Pics4Learning: Native Americans
This site makes over 400 images of Native American culture available for students and teachers. Including images of Native American dress, art, artifacts, and more, the site has given teachers and students permission to use all of the images in their work.

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Graphic Organizer:

Reading Comprehension: KWL: Grades 4–8
This Reading Comprehension: KWL helps students organize information about each expedition. The lesson culminates with a presentation of their researched material either in a written report or oral presentation. See Assessment and Evaluation.

Some of the resources on this page are in PDF format. To download them, you will need Adobe Acrobat Reader Software.

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