, 31 tweets, 17 min read Read on Twitter
64% of teachers use "Teachers Pay Teachers" website.

What will I find if I search there, using "Native American" as the search term?
I entered the phrase and got this far:

"Native American"

The autofill gave me "Native Americans" (obvious) but the second one is "Native Americans totem pole."

Does that mean that queries about totem poles are popular on this site?
For now, I'll do the "Native Americans" search and see what teachers are sharing on that site. Having been on the site before, I'm not optimistic.
"Native American Unit - Native Americans and Regions - Native American Projects" by "Rockin Resources" has 2,646 ratings.

Next highest is "Little Social Studies Thinkers for K-1: Pilgrims and Native Americans" by Karen Jones. It has 1,094 ratings. (I'm cringing.)
The first page of items has 24 distinct items. Look at the images some of them use (I can only put 4 images; there's more than 4 that are like this):
You notice the Thanksgiving image in the previous tweet?

In fact, eight of the 24 items on the first page of Teachers Pay Teachers (@TpTdotcom) have Thanksgiving in the title or in the subject.

That is not ok, at all, but it is typical.
@TpTdotcom I opened the item with the highest number of ratings. There is a "Preview" option that lets me see sample readings, worksheets, etc.

Verbs are past tense.

Information is factually wrong.
@TpTdotcom For those who don't know, I am from Nambé, one of the pueblos.

One thing this unit at Teachers Pay Teachers tells kids: for water, pueblo people would go to tops of hills, make giant snowballs, and roll them down to the crops.
@TpTdotcom What the heck is the source for that idea?! Surely this teacher isn't making stuff up.

But just as surely, this teacher is not reading critically and is mis-educating kids.
@TpTdotcom Earlier in this thread I shared images from 4 of the lessons at Teachers Pay Teachers. I should have said more.

Those cartoonish images of "Native Americans" are stereotypes. Obviously, the teachers who created them don't realize they are stereotypes.
@TpTdotcom The images, alone, are doing damage to kids when their teachers bring them into the classroom. I'm tagging the person who created that unit. @RockinResources, pls read up in this thread. Your "Native Americans" material is unacceptable.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources I can't find a way to submit this feedback at Teachers Pay Teachers. Maybe comments are only allowed if the item is purchased.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources The questions I and others who study depictions of Native ppl in kid/YA lit apply to teacher-made or commercially produced materials for use in the classroom.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources I started studying image/story in the 1990s while in grad school. In the 2000s, I worked with colleagues to create the criteria the American Indian Library Association uses to select bks for its Youth Literature awards.

ailanet.org/app/uploads/20…
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources I tagged the person (Rockin Resources) who made the problematic item I looked at; they have asked me to write directly to them. As was the case with the educelebrity in another thread, I won't take public conversations into a private space.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources Errors in materials should be publicly acknowledged so that others can see the error, the acknowledgement of that error, and the corrections, too.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources Resources for correction are available. The American Indian Library Association criteria that I linked to above is one example of a resource that Rockin Resources and others can use to evaluate/create/revise materials abt Native ppls.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources My strongest recommendations include using the specific tribal name, using the word nation (rather than tribe), using present day verbs, and making sure that images are not stereotypical. Good content is important but it is wiped away by stereotypical images.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources Upthread I was astonished (that's rare because I see a LOT of problematic material) to see a reading sheet that said pueblo ppl would go to hills, make giant snowballs, and roll them down to their gardens.

I asked about the source for that nonsense.

Sources matter!
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources #Teachers: most of what you were taught about Native ppls is wrong. The sources the "teaching" came from are bad. They're full of errors, bias, stereotyping, and deliberate efforts to cast us as "primitive."
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources Most historical fiction that you read in school casts Native ppl as aggressive, blood-thirsty, savage... that's biased imagery. Native homelands were being invaded and squatted on. Crops and homes were being burned.

When you reflect on what was happening, WHO IS THE AGGRESSOR?
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources Countless works of historical fiction show "courageous pioneer families" but when they show Native ppl... where are their families?
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources Some teachers may know about the recent push in children's/young adult publishing, to have more #OwnVoices bks published. (Info on the hashtag, here: corinneduyvis.net/ownvoices/) The Am Indian Library Assoc criteria talks about author/illustrator identity.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources I wonder if any of the teacher-created materials in Teachers Pay Teachers are ones made by Native teachers?

Teachers who are Native, for real, not ones who have a family story abt a great-great-great ancestor who was "Indian." The latter do a lot of damage.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources It is certainly true that a lot of ppl have, somewhere in their family's history, someone who was Native but those family stories turn into romanticized nonsense, and into an embrace of really awful stereotyping.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources Back to #OwnVoices in kid/ya lit. Teachers: you've got terrific choices today that you didn't have before! See, for example, Christine Day:
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources I recommend Day's debut novel, I CAN MAKE THIS PROMISE, and lots of other bks, at my site, American Indians in Children's Literature. Here's a search of my site on "recommended": …ansinchildrensliterature.blogspot.com/search?q=recom…
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources There's far more bks that get the 'not recommended' tab than there are recommended. A lot of writers who aren't Native make the same mistakes I'm seeing over at Teachers Pay Teachers.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources I should have said this earlier: I am not bashing teachers. I taught school for several years. I know how hard teachers work, and that they spend a lot of their own money on materials.

But I do think it vitally important to be critical of ourselves and what we teach.
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources This recent article that I wrote for Language Arts has ideas that apply to lesson plans: ncte.org/library/NCTEFi…
@TpTdotcom @RockinResources This one is a little older: ncte.org/library/NCTEFi…

Thanks, @NCTE, for making those two articles available at no cost to anyone.

Teachers: please share them!
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