The Birchbark House
by Louise Erdrich
Birchbark House Geography
Birchbark House Math
Birchbark House Webquest
Sacred Images: The Circle and Native American Culture
Wild RICE VIDEOS
Native Consumers - Animal Connections
Listen to the song of the:
Golden-breasted woodpecker (also called Yellow-bellied sapsucker)
Native Producers - Plant Connections
Anishinabe Culture and History
Real Life Application: Smallpox research
During Biboon, Omakayas' family is stricken with smallpox. Complete the necessary research using the links below and write a descriptive essay connecting your research to the events described in the novel. Provide examples found in the novel that provide supporting details for research facts such as where it is found, how it is transmitted, symptoms, and treatment.
World Health Organization
Center for Disease Control
Videos and Podcasts
People of the Forest (29:22)
Dense forests, streams, mirror lakes, and waterfalls were home to the Iroquois, the Cherokee, the Ojibwa, and others. The typical life of these Eastern Woodland Indians is seen through an Ojibwa family. They hunted deer and other game animals in the forest; fished and trapped in the rivers and lakes; and made their homes from what the forest provided them. The men and women had their separate chores to perform, and it was not always easy to do what was expected. In the video, Little Flower is a young girl who experiences the frustration of being allowed to do "only" women's work – cooking, sewing, basket making – but she really wants to hunt, fish, and trap. Final video segments portray the great changes brought about by the introduction of Europeans to Native American lands, as well as the mistreatment of Native Americans by the government.
Native America: Contact (14:30)
Before the arrival of the Europeans, many cultures prospered and thrived in North America. But contact with the Europeans dramatically transformed these Native Americans forever. This video examines the profound effects of this contact. Students will learn why the Americas attracted Europeans; how attitudes about the environment and property differed between the groups; the effects of the fur trade; and how Europeans brought with them something they didn’t know they had--parasitic diseases that destroyed thousands of Native American people.
Native Americans Today (27:15)
What does it mean to be a Native American living in the twenty-first century? Reviewing the history of Native American and European conflict in North America--especially the battle over reservation land at the end of the nineteenth century--the program highlights the cultures, homes, and jobs of Native Americans living across the United States and Canada. Representatives from Cherokee, Ojibwa, and Navajo tribes share their experiences living in both the Native American and the "white" world and note the guilt and shame many Native Americans felt regarding their heritage. Today, Native American children learn native languages and traditional rituals in order to take pride in their history.