As part of the 7th grade's Race and Membership unit, Native storyteller Dovie Thomason spoke with the class on Monday about her father’s experiences attending a government residential school for Indian children in the 1900s. These schools were designed to assimilate and mainstream native children, but their true impact on both individuals and the larger culture was devastating.
Dovie recently worked with Canada’s Truth and Reconciliation Commission to put together a report on Canada’s residential schools. The report is being released today. Dovie is hopeful that the 7th graders will see the United States address its own history of Native American boarding schools within the next few decades.
Seventh grader Josh Z. reflected on Dovie's visit, saying, "This was a unique opportunity for our class and we are immensely grateful to Dovie, our teachers, and our school for being able to make this happen. Like Dovie said during her presentation, 'You [typically] don’t get this story in school.' Dovie’s story came at a perfect time in our curriculum. It also complemented our spoken word project, and it was very helpful for us to see how she presented her story as a professional."