National Native American Heritage Month during November celebrates the diverse and rich culture, history, and traditions of Native people. The observance is also a time to educate anyone and everyone about the different tribes, raise awareness about the struggles native people faced as well as in the present. American Indian pictures, words, names, and stories are a crucial part of American history and help mold our life today.
Thousands of years before Christopher Columbus and his crews landed their ships in the Caribbean, Native Americans had cultivated lives and communities there. Native American history overflows with a variety of diverse groups and prominent leaders and figures. Native Americans are known for hard work and quick instinct. Today, there are about 4.5 million Native Americans in the United States, making about 1.5 percent of our population. Take some time to learn about and celebrate their culture this month.
How to observe Native American Heritage Month
Use #NativeAmericanHeritageMonth to post on social media. Keep Native American Heritage alive this November, and for all the months to follow. Here are a few ways you can celebrate this month.
- Read a Native American history book, or a novel that dives into the history and traditions of native people. Movies like Pocahontas tend to sensationalize truth about Native American history, so reading a book will likely give you a more realistic vision.
- Play a game of lacrosse! Believe it or not, lacross was one variety of indigenous stickball games the American Indians played as early as the 12th century.
- There are a few movies made about Native Americans that aren’t as oversensationalized and are definitely worth a watch. Try Reel Injun, Smoke Signals, Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee, and Winter in the Blood.
- Get in the kitchen and try a native recipe. There are tons of mouthwatering recipes from native soups, to roasted duck, or even pumpkin bread for a tasty fall treat.
- Finally, learn the true stories about the origins of Thanksgiving. What you were taught in elementary school isn’t quite accurate.
Native American Heritage Month
In 1990, President George H. W. Bush approved a joint resolution designating November National American Indian Heritage Month.