The story of one of the most famous years in American history colliding with a special decision made by the City of Seattle provided us with our first guiding, inquiry question of 5th grade Social Studies: Why does Seattle celebrate Indigenous People's Day instead of Columbus Day?
Over the past two weeks, the Islanders have been honing their research skills and investigating a variety of sources to find evidence that addresses the guiding question of this unit. After initially assessing our own knowledge, and realizing that we are coming into the school year with a range of different ideas about Columbus and virtually no background knowledge on Indigenous People's Day, we set off on our own journey of discovery--uncovering the "truth" and realizing that perspective shapes the writing of history.
As a whole group and with partners we collected research from the following online and text sources, among others:
- The Seattle Times
- CNN Online
- Time Magazine Online
- The Pew Research Center
- A Young People's History of the U.S. by Howard Zinn
- Encounter by Jane Yolen