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Curriculum and Instruction News

New website offers robust resources for exploring American Indian studies in Wisconsin

November 14, 2017

Wisconsin Public Television (WPT) Education and the Wisconsin Act 31 Coalition partners announce the launch of a new website offering a robust collection of cost-free classroom and educator professional development resources for exploring American Indian studies in Wisconsin.

Visit the WisconsinFirstNations.org websiteWisconsinFirstNations.org invites educators to explore Wisconsin Native cultures and communities through Pre K-12 educational videos, lesson plans and learning tools that address current academic standards and enhance understanding.

The website also provides teacher professional development resources, including a frequently asked questions section for answering hard-to-ask questions educators may have when teaching about Native cultures. The site also includes exemplar videos featuring Wisconsin teachers modeling how to incorporate American Indian studies into students’ everyday learning.

WisconsinFirstNations.org assists educators in fulfilling Wisconsin Act 31, the statutory requirement that all school districts provide instruction in the history, culture and tribal sovereignty of the American Indian nations in the state. It represents Wisconsin’s commitment to serve the state’s diverse communities and the American Indian tribes and bands residing within Wisconsin’s borders.

Bird Bear
Bird Bear
“Since the passage of Wisconsin state statutes over 25 years ago to teach the history, culture and tribal sovereignty of the American Indian Nations of Wisconsin in public schools, many educators have discovered that integrating American Indian studies into their instruction enhances student learning,” said Aaron Bird Bear, assistant dean for Student Diversity Programs at the UW-Madison School of Education. “The organizations who contributed to WisconsinFirstNations.org remain deeply invested in supporting educators as they teach the First Nations of Wisconsin. WisconsinFirstNations.org is a place for teachers to find quality instructional resources developed in collaboration with the 12 First Nations of Wisconsin.”

The Wisconsin Act 31 Coalition is a network of organizations in Wisconsin dedicated to the development of resources and implementation of Wisconsin Act 31. The Act 31 Coalition partners include WPT Education, the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction, the Wisconsin Indian Education Association, UW-Madison School of Education, the Wisconsin Historical Society, University of Wisconsin-Green Bay First Nation Studies, and the Great Lakes Indian Fish and Wildlife Commission.

WPT has been part of the educational infrastructure of the state since its beginnings, on television, in the classroom and in the community. WPT Education’s mission is to engage and inspire you to continue to grow through learning. WPT is a service of the Educational Communications Board and the University of Wisconsin-Extension.
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