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Pioneer PBS posts videos and lesson plans for Native American Heritage Month
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Download photo of a Dakota dress


GRANITE FALLS, Minn. — In coordination with Native American Heritage Month, Pioneer PBS is releasing a new video to the PBS LearningMedia site for teachers to use in classrooms throughout the country. The new documentary “Saksanica”about the traditional art of Dakota dress making and the accompanying “Cultural Appreciation vs Cultural Appropriation” lesson plan have been posted to the station's Intergenerational Art and Culture Traditions gallery along with 13 other videos and lessons plans.

Many of these videos and lesson plans provide a look at how artistic and cultural practices are being used to preserve culture and identity in modern Native communities in southwest and western Minnesota. Some of the master artists featured in the videos include James Star Comes Out of the Balck Hills, Walter “Super” LaBatte Jr. of Granite Falls and Joyce Pendleton of Morton.

Several of the videos explore how Norwegian and Swedish folk art traditions are being practiced today by masters such as Pieper Bloomquist of Grand Forks, North Dakota and Harley Refsal of Decorah, Iowa.

“Exploring folk and traditional arts not only provides us with pathways of discovery to our own history and heritage, it also provides us the opportunity of cross-cultural understanding. Whether that’s across Swedish and Norwegian traditions or Scandinavian and Native American traditions, all help us deepen our appreciation for one another,” stated Shari Lamke, Pioneer PBS president and general manager.

All of the videos portray how master artists and craftspeople are purposefully teaching these practices to younger generations.  

The videos and lesson plans are free to use in school settings, with study clubs and for public screening events at libraries and places of worship.

For more information or call 1-800-726-3178.

About Pioneer PBS

Established in 1966, Pioneer PBS is an award-winning, viewer-supported television station dedicated to sharing local stories of the region with the world. For more information visit: