At St. Joseph’s, teachers work to incorporate Lakota (Sioux) culture into their lesson plans for the day. Outside of St. Joseph’s Indian School,the state of South Dakota has put out standards for cultural teaching.
- In Sandi’s math class, students wrote and solved number sentences using the Lakota language instead of digits.
- In Steve’s fourth grade class, students read “A Little Boy and Girl in the Clouds” and “Star Boy” by Paul Goble.
- Fifth grade students learned about Winter Counts and constructed their own.
- Sarah’s eighth-grade students read The Lakota Way: Stories & Lessons for Living by Joseph Marshall III.
- In computer class, Gina worked with students to find a map of South Dakota reservations and discuss where each reservation is and which ones they are from.
- Using Sherman Alexie’s essay, “The Joys of Reading and Writing, Superman and Me,” students in Craig’s class worked on identifying important values, philosophy, and beliefs in writing by Native Americans.
- In Linea’s reading class, students listened to The Eagle – empathizing Compasion (wah-un-shee-lah-pee) – to care to sympathize and The Story of No Moccasins – empathizing Humility (un-shee-ee-cee-hay-pee) – to be humble, modest, unpretentious.
- Third grade students watched a Native American storyteller share the story of why rabbit is the way he is. After sharing and discussing the story, students made an animal poster labeling each part along with the Lakota word.
- First grade students read “The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush” by Tomie dePaola. The students created a Native American boy or girl and placed shapes in a pattern on the chest to represent the traditional beadwork and patterns on the leather.