________________ CM . . . . Volume XI Number 16 . . . . April 15, 2005

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Nations of the Eastern Great Lakes. (Native Nations of North America).

Rebecca Sjonger and Bobbie Kalman.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2005.
32 pp., pbk. & cl., $9.86 (pbk.), $20.76 (RLB.).
ISBN 0-7787-0473-4 (pbk.), ISBN 0-7787-0381-9 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Indians of North America-Great Lakes-History.
Indians of North America-Great Lakes-Social life and customs.

Grades 4-7 / Ages 9-12.

Review by Elaine Fuhr.

***½ /4

   
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Life of the Powhatan. (Native Nations of North America).

Rebecca Sjonger and Bobbie Kalman.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2005.
32 pp., pbk. & cl., $9.86 (pbk.), $20.76 (RLB.).
ISBN 0-7787-0472-6 (pbk.), ISBN 0-7787-0380-0 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Powhatan Indians-History.
Powhatan Indians-Social life and customs. Pocahontas, d. 1617.

Grades 4-7 / Ages 9-12.

Review by Elaine Fuhr.

***½ /4

   
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Life of the California Coast Nations. (Native Nations of North America).

Molly Aloian and Bobbie Kalman.
St. Catharines, ON: Crabtree, 2005.
32 pp., pbk. & cl., $9.86 (pbk.), $20.76 (RLB.).
ISBN 0-7787-0474-2 (pbk.), ISBN 0-7787-0382-7 (RLB).

Subject Headings:
Indians of North America-California-History.
Indians of North America-California-Social life and customs.

Grades 4-7 / Ages 9-12.

Review by Elaine Fuhr.

***½ /4

excerpt:

CROPS GROWN BY WOMEN

Farming helped many nations thrive. Women planted the seeds and looked after the fields. They grew three main crops-corn, beans, and squash-which they called the "three sisters." Women tended the crops during the growing season using tools made from wood, stone, and animal bones. Women were also responsible for collecting the harvests. (From Nations of the Eastern Great Lakes.)

This set of three books from the “Native Nations of North America” series give an in-depth study of the indigenous people of three specific areas of North America. Though they are compatible with an elementary social studies history curriculum of Canada and the United States, these texts would also be appropriate for a Middle School level.

     Nations of the Eastern Great Lakes introduces, in great detail, the tribes of the Great Lakes region that eventually joined to form the Wendat and Haudenosaunee Confederacies. The material discusses daily life, government and contact with Europeans. This contact greatly changed the lives of these native people, an important topic discussed within the book’s pages. Because the information in this book is pertinent to both Canada and the United States, both countries are mentioned, along with minor differences in terminology.

     Life of the Powhatan tells of the people of the Tidewater, an area that is now, Virginia. Again, family, daily life, the joining of the neighboring nations in a confederacy and the changes that occurred with the arrival of the Europeans, are discussed in great detail.

     Life of the California Coast Nations uses the same format as the other two books to tell the history of seven nations of native people who lived along the coast of California. The daily lives of these tribes were very different in many ways, yet similar in the use and care of their land, their exposure to Europeans and the changes they faced.

     These three texts are easy to read and very well written. They cover material more thoroughly than others that I have read and used and are extremely interesting, reading more like a novel than a text book for curricular use. Every page displays photographs and illustrations or maps that are deeply detailed and richly colored, a pleasure to study. All three have glossaries of bolded terminology at the back and a feature that is seldom seen. The final chapter of each text tells of these fascinating nations today and how they are working to keep their traditions alive.

     This set of books is not only an excellent resource for a school curriculum but also very interesting historical reading.

Highly Recommended.

Elaine Fuhr of Wabamum, AB, is a special needs and middle school teacher.

To comment on this title or this review, send mail to cm@umanitoba.ca.

Copyright the Manitoba Library Association. Reproduction for personal use is permitted only if this copyright notice is maintained. Any other reproduction is prohibited without permission.
Published by
The Manitoba Library Association
ISSN 1201-9364
Hosted by the University of Manitoba.

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