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Native Americans


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Hi, we are exploring countries around the world this term and Native americans is something we as a team thought it would be good to explore with the children. I had ideas about making indian headresses and making life size teepees etc, however, I keep coming across websites saying you should not do these things in a "respectful" setting as it can be seen as mickey taking. Now I feel a bit stuck for ideas if we are to be "respectful". i do my best to respect each culture as we look at them but now feel a bit lost as to how to integrate crafts etc with this whilst still being respectful! Jo

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I think you would need to be very careful to tackle this in the same way that you are tackling other countries from around the world so that you are even handed. Are you are looking at how people in countries lived in the past? It can be difficult to avoid giving the children the impression that Native Americans are not living in a modern way in a modern world. They will maintain traditions from the past, as we all do to celebrate our roots. This can be difficult with young children because of their levels of understanding and our understanding of 'native' or 'indigenous'. It's a difficult one isn't it and I think you need to be clear about why you are doing it and how?

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