Children's Literature

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Native American Heritage Month

Native American Heritage Month Gallery

Fry Bread

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: PZ7.1.M34683 Fry 2019
Lesson Plan: K-3 Lesson Plans
Fry bread is food.It is warm and delicious, piled high on a plate. Fry bread is time.It brings families together for meals and new memories. Fry bread is nation. It might look or taste different, but it is still shared by many, from coast to coast and beyond. Fry bread is us. It is a celebration of old and new, traditional and modern, similarity and difference.

Sweetest Kulu

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: PZ7.1.K35 Sw 2014 
Lesson Plan: K-3 Lesson Plans
"Dream a little, Kulu, this world now sings a most beautiful song of you." This beautiful bedtime poem, written by acclaimed Inuit throat singer Celina Kalluk, describes the gifts given to a newborn baby by all the animals of the Arctic. Lyrically and tenderly told by a mother speaking to her own little Kulu; an Inuktitut term of endearment often bestowed upon babies and young children, this visually stunning book is infused with the traditional Inuit values of love and respect for the land and its animal inhabitants. A perfect gift for new parents.

Hearts Unbroken

Location: Young Adult
Call Number:  PS3619.M5733 H43 2018
When Louise Wolfe's first real boyfriend mocks and disrespects Native people in front of her, she breaks things off and dumps him over e-mail. It's her senior year, anyway, and she'd rather spend her time with her family and friends and working on the school newspaper. The editors pair her up with Joey Kairouz, the ambitious new photojournalist, and in no time the paper's staff find themselves with a major story to cover: the school musical director's inclusive approach to casting The Wizard of Oz has been provoking backlash in their mostly white, middle-class Kansas town.

#Notyourprincess

Location: Non-Fiction
Call Number: E98.W8 N68 2017
Lesson Plan: High School Lesson Planning
Native Women demand to be heard in this stunning anthology. Whether looking back to a troubled past or welcoming a hopeful future, the powerful voices of Indigenous women across North America resound in this book. In the same style as the best-selling Dreaming in Indian, #Not Your Princess presents an eclectic collection of poems, essays, interviews, and art that combine to express the experience of being a Native woman.

Indian No More

Location: Chapter Books
Call Number: PZ7.1.M46365 Ind 2019 
Lesson Plan: Lesson Planning Resources
When Regina's Umpqua tribe is legally terminated and her family must relocate from Oregon to Los Angeles, she goes on a quest to understand her identity as an Indian despite being so far from home. Regina Petit's family has always been Umpqua, and living on the Grand Ronde Tribe's reservation is all ten-year-old Regina has ever known. Her biggest worry is that Sasquatch may actually exist out in the forest. But when the federal government enacts a law that says Regina's tribe no longer exists, Regina becomes "Indian no more" overnight--even though she lives with her tribe and practices tribal customs, and even though her ancestors were Indian for countless generations.

All Our Relatives

Location: Non-Fiction
Call Number: E98.P5 G63 2005
Through carefully chosen stories from the olden days and art that meticulously reflects traditional designs and colors, Goble provides wonderful insights into the spiritual life of the Plains Indians. His intimate knowledge of their world transports the reader into a vision of the sacred beauty and wisdom that defined traditional Native America.

The Story of Jumping Mouse

Location: Traditional Tales
Call Number: PZ8.S585 St 1984
Based on a Native American legend, this is the tale of a compassionate, courageous mouse who journeys to a far-off land and becomes a magnificent soaring eagle.

Thirteen Moons on Turtle's Back

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: PS3552.R794 T47 1992
Each legend in this lyrical collection of Native American mythology is taken from a different tribe, and recounts how these people related the cycles of the moon to the seasons. Full color.

SkySisters

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: PZ7.W32 Sk 2000
Two Ojibway sisters set off across the frozen north country to see the SkySpirits' midnight dance. It isn't easy for the younger sister to be silent, but gradually she begins to treasure the stillness and the wonderful experiences it brings. After an exhilarating walk and patient waiting, the girls are rewarded by the arrival of the SkySpirits -- the northern lights -- dancing and shimmering in the night sky. This powerful story, with its stunning illustrations, captures the chill of a northern night, the warmth of the family circle and the radiance of a child's wonder.

Shanyáak'utlaax

Location: Traditional Tales
Call Number: E99.T6 S43 2017 
Shanyaak'utlaax: Salmon Boy comes from an ancient Tlingit story that teaches about respect for nature, animals and culture. The title character, a Tlingit boy, violates these core cultural values when he flings away a dried piece of salmon with mold on the end given to him by his mother. His disrespect offends the Salmon People, who sweep him into the water and into their world.

North American Indian

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: E77.4 .M87 1995
Uncover the incredible diversity and rich contributions of Native American culture. This book shows a stunning array of artifacts from New York's American Museum of Natural History: towering totem poles, ornate wooden masks worn by Hopi rainmakers, deadly blowguns used by Florida Seminoles, and more. An attractive title.-- School Library Journal

Jingle Dancer

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: PZ7.S64464 Ji 2000
New York Times bestselling author Cynthia Leitich Smith's lyrical text is paired with the warm, evocative watercolors of Cornelius Van Wright and Ying-Hwa Hu in this affirming story of a contemporary Native American girl who turns to her family and community. The cone-shaped jingles sewn to Grandma Wolfe's dress sing tink, tink, tink, tink... Jenna loves the tradition of jingle dancing that has been shared over generations in her family and intertribal community. She hopes to dance at the next powwow. But with the day quickly approaching, she has a problem--how will her dress sing if it has no jingles?

Sequoyah

Location: Traditional Tales
Call Number: E99.C5 S3885 1997
Featuring 88 characters, Sequoyah's syllabary was the first written Native American language. With it, the Cherokees wrote a constitution and published the first Native American newspaper in the U.S.

Hiawatha and the Peacemaker

Location: Picture Books
Call Number:  PZ7.1.R635 Hi 2015
Lesson Plan: Discussion Questions
Born of Mohawk and Cayuga descent, musical icon Robbie Robertson learned the story of Hiawatha and his spiritual guide, the Peacemaker, as part of the Iroquois oral tradition. Now he shares the same gift of storytelling with a new generation. Hiawatha was a strong and articulate Mohawk who was chosen to translate the Peacemaker's message of unity for the five warring Iroquois nations during the 14th century.

Good Luck Cat

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: PZ7.H2229 Go 2000
Some cats are good luck. You pet them and good things happen. Woogie is one of those cats. But as Woogie gets into one mishap after another, everyone starts to worry. Can a good luck cat's good luck run out? Celebrates the special relationship between a young girl and her cat; A modern Native American story from a member of the Muskogee-Creek tribe

Crazy Horse's Vision

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: PZ7.B8882816 Cr 2000
Illustrated by S D Nelson. Crazy Horse is among the best known Native American heroes but many people do not know that his boyhood name was Curly, inspired by his curly hair. In this beautiful book, renowned Abenaki author Joseph Bruchac tells the gripping and compelling story of how the dedicated young boy, Curly, grows into the brave warrior Crazy Horse. Illustrated throughout in full colour. Ages 6 and upwards.

Sweetgrass Basket

Location: Young Adult
Call Number: PS3603.A785 S94 2005
In prose poetry and alternating voices, Marlene Carvell weaves a heartbreakingly beautiful story based on the real-life experiences of Native American children. Mattie and Sarah are two Mohawk sisters who are sent to an off-reservation school after the death of their mother. Subject to intimidation and corporal punishment, with little hope of contact with their father, the girls are taught menial tasks to prepare them for life as domestics. How Mattie and Sarah protect their culture, memories of their family life, and their love for each other makes for a powerful, unforgettable historical novel.

Bowwow Powwow

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: E98.P86 C58 2018
Lesson Plan: K-2 Lesson Plan
Windy Girl is blessed with a vivid imagination. From Uncle she gathers stories of long-ago traditions, about dances and sharing and gratitude. Windy can tell such stories herself-about her dog, Itchy Boy, and the way he dances to request a treat and how he wriggles with joy in response to, well, just about everything.

I Can Make This Promise

Location: Chapter Books
Call Number: PZ7.1.D392 Iaf 2019
All her life, Edie has known that her mom was adopted by a white couple. So, no matter how curious she might be about her Native American heritage, Edie is sure her family doesn't have any answers. Until the day when she and her friends discover a box hidden in the attic--a box full of letters signed "Love, Edith," and photos of a woman who looks just like her. Suddenly, Edie has a flurry of new questions about this woman who shares her name. Could she belong to the Native family that Edie never knew about But if her mom and dad have kept this secret from her all her life, how can she trust them to tell her the truth now

We Are Grateful: Otsaliheliga

Location: Picture Books
Call Number: E99.C5 S657 2018 
The Cherokee community is grateful for blessings and challenges that each season brings. This is modern Native American life as told by an enrolled citizen of the Cherokee Nation.

Sitting Bull in His Own Words

Location: Biographies
Call Number: E99.D1 S464 2015
Sitting Bull, the well-known Native American chief, united the Lakota Sioux in the northern Great Plains and led a mighty resistance of tribes who refused to be placed on reservations. This struggle resulted in violence, most famously at Little Bighorn in 1876. Though Sitting Bull fled to Canada, he ultimately returned to the United States in 1881. This book uses Sitting Bull's powerful words to examine the leader's considerable courage and determination as well as his aspirations for Native Americans.

Walk Two Moons

Location: Chapter Books
Call Number: PZ7.C8615 Wal 1994 
In her own singularly beautiful style, Newbery Medal winner Sharon Creech intricately weaves together two tales, one funny, one bittersweet, to create a heartwarming, compelling, and utterly moving story of love, loss, and the complexity of human emotion. Thirteen-year-old Salamanca Tree Hiddle, proud of her country roots and the "Indian-ness in her blood," travels from Ohio to Idaho with her eccentric grandparents. Along the way, she tells them of the story of Phoebe Winterbottom, who received mysterious messages, who met a "potential lunatic," and whose mother disappeared.