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Third grade students learn of Coastal Salish culture
Third grade students learn of Coastal Salish culture
Posted on 04/01/2016
Nearly 1,700 third grade students will visit  The Karshner Museum and Center for Culture & Arts this year as part of the district's literacy curriculum. They will visit the museum as a culminating activity following a two-week Native American Studies unit.
The curriculum, specially designed by specialists in the Puyallup School District, integrates proven instructional strategies such as Guided Language Acquisition Development (GLAD) and arts instruction.

Lesson plans focus on Washington's coastal and plateau Native American tribes and are aligned to the Common Core State Standards and English Language Proficiency standards. Instruction also includes the integration of social studies skills such as how to use primary sources in research.

The curriculum also meets the requirements of a new law which requires schools to teach about Native Americans unique to their area. Last year, the Washington State legislature passed Senate Bill 5433 which requires the teaching of Northwest tribal history, culture, and government in Washington State's common schools.

Upon their arrival at the teaching museum, third graders will learn about artifactsrelated to their classroom lessons, use modern technology to support their research and learning, and do art projects such as weaving authentic cattail mats.

The learning will continue in the weeks following the trip as third graders prepare reports, do art projects, tell stories, and incorporate technology related to their museum visit.

During their field trip students will see the Legacy Washington exhibit, "We're Still Here: The Survival of Washington Indians." The traveling history exhibit is in the form of large panels that feature stories and photographs of the people and events that have made Washington state what it is today.

Legacy Washington exhibits are displayed for a year in the Secretary of State's lobby at the Capitol building in Olympia. From there, they make their first stop at the Karshner Museum and Center for Culture & Arts before traveling to other locations statewide.

In addition to the Legacy Washington exhibit, students will be invited into museum galleries to see artifacts related to Coastal and Plateau Native Americans.

Students will view a rare mountain goat wool and dog hair woven blanket, fishing and hunting tools, and a wide variety of baskets including one made by Chief Sealth's daughter, Princess Angeline. A bentwood box, beaded jewelry, and authentic carved pieces for the bone game Slahal are part of the exhibit, "From the Salish Sea to Mount Tacobet." Third graders will complete a research journal while examining these primary sources.

While the teaching museum is open for free to school district field trips, it is also available to outside groups and organizations for field trips. The museum is also open to the public every school day from 1:00 - 4:00 p.m.