Our country honors Christopher Columbus for his discovery of America. When he arrived on its shores, however, there were already people living on the land – Native Americans. Who, then, are the real indigenous people of America? Where do schools and teachers start when teaching this subject to students?
Below are a few tips for teachers, and activities that get students involved.
- Do your homework. Before having students embark on this debate, know what the arguments are for each side.
- Find books and other resources for students to use.
- Find recipes of food that students can make at home.
- Useful website:
- Set up a debate for students. Have one side research for Columbus and one for the Native Americans.
- Invite guest speakers like historians, Native American leaders, etc. to talk to students.
- Have students role-play.
- Create a timeline of events and locations.
- Allow students to be the historians as they research the First Thanksgiving to uncover details.
- Make powerpoint presentations for/against Columbus.
- Play Jeopardy! – trivia game after students have completed research on the topic.
- Design a Thanksgiving meal that is true to historical accounts of the food available at the time.