Relations with Indians: American History for Kids

We read the book The Courage of Sarah Noble, observed animals and made a peace treaty.

When people from different cultures begin living in the same area there are instances of great cooperation and learning as well as unbelievable barbaric behavior. When people take the time to understand and appreciate differences wonderful experiences follow. On the other hand, when people view their culture as superior and have little respect for others, atrocities follow. American history is filled with both types of examples. Unfortunately, the second and tragic type is more prevalent. In teaching our children, it is important to study both.

As a brief introduction to this topic we read the book The Courage of Sarah Noble

Sarah Noble was a real little girl who lived during the1700's. Her family, like many families of the period, journeyed into Indian territory to begin a new life. Sarah and her father left before the rest of the family. Sarah cooked and helped her father while he built a house. Once the house was ready, Sarah's father went to fetch the rest of the family and Sarah lived with an Indian family. Despite the fact that they took good care of Sarah, her mother was still unsure. This beautiful example of cooperation teaches how people of different cultures can learn from one another if they open their hearts to mutual respect.

Native Americans were skilled hunters. One reason they were so successful was because they spent long hours observing animal behavior. Therefore, as part of learning about Native American relations, we spent a few mornings observing birds.

When one family or person is immersed into a foreign culture, they are not typically seen as a threat. After all, one person against many doesn't often work for long. However, when one culture is flooded with people of another culture, problems tend to arise. Each colony had their own way of creating relationships with Native Americans and we can learn from their successes and failures. Some made war while others made peace. Several constructed peace treaties. William Penn and the colony of Pennsylvania was one of the most respectful. He wanted not only people of differing religions to be treated equally, but included Natives as well.

After discussing different ways of structuring relationships, my daughter created a peace treaty.

For more American History lessons for kids, please visit Highhill Education again next week or visit our archives on our History Page.

Check out these great blog hops for more educational activity ideas.  

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