Friday, October 5, 2018

Celebrating Native Americans' Day

A message from South Dakota Indian Education Director Mato Standing High

Native Americans' Day is for all of us. 

Remember, for a lot of South Dakotans, every day is Native Americans' Day. For others, it's an opportunity to remember and respect people who have inhabited this continent since time immemorial. 

As South Dakotans, we are lucky to have a unique history to share--a history that is tied to the land that we all share and respect. When we take time to understand each other, it gives us not only greater understanding, but better perspective--perspective that helps break stereotypes and bridges gaps that were also created by history. 

If you are asking yourself, how? or why? in reading this post, that is exactly why we must make more of an effort to learn about OUR Lakota, Nakota and Dakota neighbors, friends and relatives. 

One resource that is available for this exact purpose is the Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings. The Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings are a resource that has been developed over the past several years by numerous Lakota elders for use in the classroom. They can be used at any level of education and should be used in every school in South Dakota. It is not just for our Lakota, Nakota and Dakota people, it is for South Dakota. 

We all share the history and, to some extent, the culture. It is an honor and privilege to have such a unique and rich history as the people of South Dakota. 

Have a great Native Americans' Day!