Unquowa Featured in New London DayPosted by Trésor Kayumba
Our 5th grade Social Studies class was recently featured in Connecticut Family, a special publication magazine within the New London Day. We were featured in the magazine for our collaborative learning and teaching experience of the history of Native Americans in New England. We worked with educator and historian Chris Newell, who is a Pequot Museum educator, and co-founder of Akomawt Educational Initiative.
Our 5th grade scholars made an impression with their knowledge of the Native American experience and colonization. Such an impression that Chris asked to include us in the article, adding:
“Akomawt’s approach is to create new learning paths to include Native perspective in these stories so that American students learn a fully rounded history of this country. We teach not just the parts we love to celebrate, but the parts of history that were not so great. By working with 5th graders, with this level of honesty about history (telling the good, the bad and the ugly) the idea is not to induce guilt, but rather to learn from the mistakes of history. Akomawt believes very strongly in experiential learning and my time with the students at Unquowa was well spent as I saw the light in their eyes open up and we changed their direction to a more informed one going into the future. Unquowa’s choice to involve this learning approach is apparent. Using good sources is so important. These students will go on to their high schools and question why Native perspective is left out of the history they’re being taught there and be the leaders at making the change. It’s a double-strategy. A bottom-up approach, working with students directly to change the system through education like our work at Unquowa, but we also employ a top-down approach and work with teachers and the systems that teach teachers to show them the value in what we do and give them a path to follow that is informative and culturally competent. There are lofty goals for what we do and Unquowa is now part of the story of how we get there.”
I personally want to thank 5th grade scholars for their contribution in these efforts, please give them a hand!
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