The student news site of Franklin Delano Roosevelt High School

The New Dealer

The student news site of Franklin Delano Roosevelt High School

The New Dealer

The student news site of Franklin Delano Roosevelt High School

The New Dealer

Native American History Month: Let’s Show Cultural Appreciation


Happy belated Native American History Month! I know everyone is accustomed to November being the month for Thanksgiving but Native American history is something just as important if not more important that we should celebrate in November. So in honor of Native American History month, I am going to give you some examples of how to appreciate rather than appropriate Native American culture for next November and year round. But before we dive into all of that, I just want to give some quick definitions about what cultural appropriation and cultural appreciation mean, how they are different, and why it is important to be mindful of them. 

Cultural Appropriation- the use of certain language, clothing, behavior, or customs/traditions that belong to a minority culture/social group by a more dominant culture in a way that is disrespectful or stereotypical.

Cultural Appreciation- the act of understanding that a different culture is valuable and important, involving the desire to explore and educate oneself on said culture, listening to the beliefs and traditions while honoring them. 

Alright now that we are all a little more familiar with the terminology let’s get into some ideas and ways we can celebrate and appreciate Native American Culture!

1. Visit a Native American reservation or Native American Museum

There are about 327 Native American reservations across the United States, most are there to preserve their culture and to ensure it continues to the next generations, and they do not take tourists usually. However, there are a few reservations that welcome visitors, so they can be educated on their culture and what their history is. For example, the Cherokee community in North Carolina welcomes visitors to the interactive museum they have erected there and is perfect for all ages to learn about Cherokee history and who they are. The Cherokee community also hosts cultural events and sells items close by.

2. Attend or host an educational event

During November there are a variety of educational events that are held by various educational institutions that you could attend. Educational institutions like The Library of Congress and the National Archives hosted events this past November in several locations across the states. If there are no events in your area you can always throw your own educational event after doing your research and maybe even finding those of different Native American communities to come speak at the event you host. 

3. Read the work of Native American Authors

One great way to learn about and celebrate Native American culture is to read the work of Native American authors. A few great examples of said Native American authors include Tommy Orange, Louise Erdrich, Stephen Graham Jones, and Joy Harjo. Their works can range from horror to romance and everything between genres. You can also look at books from the National Archives to learn more about the history.

4. Support Native-Owned Businesses and Charities

Another great way to support and appreciate the Native American community is to buy products from Native-owned businesses and donate to Native American charities! 

There are so many other ways to appreciate Native American culture, and I encourage you to do more research to learn about those methods. I have listed some other resources below that I used for this article and just found after some brief research. 

Native Appropriation Isn’t Appreciation. It Causes Real Harm. (

5 ways to honor Native Americans during National Native American Heritage Month — Nez Perce Wallowa Homeland (

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