Updates from the Wakanyeja Early Childhood Education Initiative

The ECED Special Topics course attended the Native American Child and Family Conference on Wed. March 20th at the Hotel Albuquerque.  Students attended conference sessions of their choice and also helped facilitate a workshop from 3:00-5pm.  Over 50 people attended the session!  Conference attendees included Indian Head Start staff and administration from the southwest.  SIPI’s workshop focused on sharing information regarding how SIPI works to engage Head Start families in developing a cultural curriculum.  Audience members were engaged in the process and had many questions regarding the Wakanyeja “Sacred Little Ones” project.  Following the presentation, Dr. Tarajean Yazzie-Mintz- Wakanyeja “Sacred Little Ones” program officer from the American Indian College Fund, engaged the group in a debriefing session where students reflected on the experience.

Students who participated include: Shelby Holt, Brandon Barney, Christine Lucero, Kim Dominic Ray, Sasha Brown, Michele Morgan, Jody Lucero, and Sandra Sandoval (not pictured)

A big thank you to everyone who supported our efforts to include students in meaningful learning experiences that allow them to contribute to the greater community.  Many tribal Head Start teachers and administrators attended the session.  Students are helping to solidify SIPI’s reputation as a community college that engages students in meaningful experiences.  Look for more to come from our future Indian educators!

by Danielle Lansing, Ed. D
Early Childhood Instructor/Coordinator
Wakanyeja “Sacred Little Ones” Project Director

 

Program Leads present their research at Society for Applied Anthropology

The Wakanyeja ECE Initiative tribal college grantees, Northwest Indian College, College of Menominee Nation, Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute and Ilisagvik College, presented their respective research on strengthening early childhood education in Native communities at the Society for Applied Anthropology (SfAA) in Denver on March 23, 2013.  Each funded tribal college developed a research poster to highlight model programming implementation, parent empowerment, language and culture educational opportunities, and development of high quality instruction in early learning programs serving Native children and families.  Presenting at national scholarly conferences and on research-based practices is new for these project directors, and they received ample engagement of their ideas from a number of participants representing scholarship in the fields of education and anthropology.  Feedback from participants included increased praise of the American Indian College Fund’s activities in supporting research-based practices and accolades about the new knowledge emerging from Northwest Indian College, College of Menominee Nation, Southwestern Indian Polytechnic Institute and Ilisagvik College.

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