This summer, the Native American Studies Program in the Eberly College of Arts and Sciences at West Virginia University is helping West Virginia teachers in grades K-12 incorporate Native American content into their curricula.


From June 14-20,A Crossroads of Native Culture and History: Examining the Native Heritage of West Virginia and the Regionwill provide participants with knowledge of Native American culture and tools to bring subject matter to life in the classroom. With one of the regions few academic programs in Native American Studies, WVU is in a unique position to offer this high-quality immersionexperience with talented faculty and the regions most respected cultural experts.


In recent years, many teachers have approached me looking for ways to weave more American Indian content into their history and social studies curricula, as well as in literature, science and art,said Bonne Brown, institute director and coordinator of the Native American Studies Program.


Teachers participating in WVU s teaching institute will expand their knowledge through hands-on activities encompassing Native American culture and ethno-botany, lecture seminars and a film series. Keynote presenters will include award-winning West Virginia archaeologist Darla Spencer, who is currently researching pottery artifacts from Putnam Countys Buffalo Village site; and cultural educator Joe Candillo of the Pascua Yaqui tribe, whose replica artifacts have been commissioned by museums and historical sites throughout the country.


Participants will also travel to regional archeological and historical sites, including the prehistoric rock shelter in Meadowcroft, Pa.; Grave Creek Mound in Moundsville; Pricketts Fort in Fairmont; the Hall of American Indians at Carnegie Museum in Pittsburgh; and Fort Necessity and Woodland Zoo in Farmington, Pa.


The Native American Studies Teacher Institute is supported by a grant from the West Virginia Humanities Council, which funds a state institution to host area educators and offer graduate and continuing education credit in a humanities subject annually.


Application materials have been sent to West Virginia schools and teachers throughout the state. Participants can receive four continuing education units or earn three graduate credits in history if they are enrolled at WVU for the summer and registered for HIST 793P : (Special Topics) Native American Culture and History. Admission to this course is only available to institute participants.


Registration is being accepted on a first-come, first-serve basis, and enrollment is limited to 30 teachers. The cost is $264, which covers registration, meals, lodging, transportation, all admission fees, readings, workshop materials and supplies. Institute participants with financial needs can also apply for one of four graduate tuition waivers available.


For more information or to register for the institute, contact Brown at 304-293-4626 or ” Bonniem.Brown@mail.wvu.edu rel=nofollow> Bonniem.Brown@mail.wvu.edu . To download a brochure and application, click here .