ERIC Number: ED355156
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1992-Nov
Reference Count: N/A
Fifth-Graders' Ideas about Native Americans Expressed before and after Studying Them within a U.S. History Course. Elementary Subjects Center Series No. 77.
VanSledright, Bruce A.; And Others
Prior to a curriculum unit on Native Americans in a U.S. history course, three classes of fifth graders stated what they knew or believed they knew about these people and what they wanted to learn about them. After the unit, they reported what they had learned. In addition, a stratified sample of 10 students was interviewed concerning the details of their thinking about several key subtopics. The data indicated that the students entered the unit already having made progress in moving beyond the developmentally primitive, negative and cartoon-like stereotypes of Indians that have been observed in preschool and early primary grade students. Due in particular to what they had learned about Michigan tribes during a fourth grade Michigan history unit, the students had acquired both some admiration for and some knowledge about Native American customs as adaptations to life in the wilderness. This fifth grade unit expanded and differentiated the students' knowledge by teaching them about five main tribal groups who lived in different parts of the continent and had contrasting customs. The students had difficulty drawing comparisons between Native Americans and 16th and 17th century Europeans, even following the unit, mostly because they did not know much about the Europeans. Twenty-four references are attached. (Author/LBG)
Descriptors: American Indian History, Curriculum Research, Elementary School Students, European History, Grade 5, Intermediate Grades, Outcomes of Education, Social Studies, Student Attitudes, Student Development, Tribes, United States History, Units of Study
Center for the Learning and Teaching of Elementary Subjects, Institute for Research on Teaching, 252 Erickson Hall, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI 48824-1034 ($9).
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Sponsor: Office of Educational Research and Improvement (ED), Washington, DC.
Authoring Institution: Center for the Learning and Teaching of Elementary Subjects, East Lansing, MI.
Identifiers - Location: Michigan