This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner Home Page About ANKN Publications Academic Programs Curriculum Resources Calendar of Events Announcements Site Index This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner This is part of the ANKN Banner
This is part of the ANKN Logo This is part of the ANKN Banner This is part of the ANKN Banner
Native Pathways to Education
Alaska Native Cultural Resources
Indigenous Knowledge Systems
Indigenous Education Worldwide

Lessons & Units

A database of lessons and units searchable by content and cultural standards, cultural region and grade level. More units will be available soon. You can use Acrobat Reader to look at the PDF version of the Cover Sheet for the Units and Self-Assessment for Cultural Standards in Practice.


by Jonas Ramoth and Sidney Stephens

Authors: Elder Jonas Ramoth, Selawik; Sidney Stephens, Fairbanks

Grade Level: 5-8

Context: Winter-Long Investigation


Alaska Cultural Standards: B2 -Make effective use of the knowledge, skills and ways of knowing from their own cultural traditions to learn about the larger world in which they live

D1 - Acquire in-depth cultural knowledge through active participation and meaningful interaction with Elders

Skills and Knowledge:

    • Develop respect for elders and others who have learned to read the weather.
    • Recognize that weather cannot be controlled and must be respected.
    • Develop the habit of frequently observing the weather and noting specific signs, changes and patterns that are important for their area.
    • Use local weather knowledge and skills to make decisions about how to prepare for weather conditions.


Alaska Science Standards:

A4 - Understand observable natural events such as tides, weather, seasons and moon phases in terms of the structure and motion of the earth.*

B1 - Use the processes of science; these processes include observing, classifying, measuring, interpreting data, inferring, communicating, controlling variables, developing models and theories, hypothesizing, predicting and experimenting

B2 - Design and conduct scientific investigations using appropriate instruments.

C3- Understand that society, culture, history and the environment affect the development of scientific knowledge.

Skills and Knowledge:

    • Understand that differential heating of air masses produces both local breezes and global winds
    • Understand that global patterns of atmospheric movement influence local weather.
    • Make qualitative and quantitative observations,
    • interpret data and use this information to explain everyday phenomena and make predictions.
    • Design and conduct an investigation of local weather using appropriate tools and techniques.
    • Describe how local history, culture and environment have affected the development of scientific knowledge.


* Science Content Standard A-8 related to heat transfer could also be used



Section I - Observing Locally

Section II - Understanding Wind

Section III - Connecting Globally

Appendix A - Selawik Weather Information from Jonas Ramoth

Appendix B - Assessment

Appendix C - Weather Resource List

Appendix D - Interdisciplinary Integration



Whouy Sze Kuinalth
"Teaching Our Many Grandchildren"
Tauhna Cauyalitahtug
(To Make a Drum)
Math Story Problems
St. Lawrence Island Rain Parka Winds and Weather Willow
Driftwood Snowshoes Moose
Plants of the Tundra Animal Classification for Yup'ik Region Rabbit Snaring
The Right Tool for the Job
Fishing Tools and Technology
Blackfish Family Tree
Medicinal Plants of the Kodiak Alutiiq Archipelago Beaver in Interior Alaska Digging and Preparing Spruce Roots
Moose in Interior Alaska Birds Around the Village  


Handbook for Culturally Responsive Science Curriculum by Sidney Stephens
Excerpt: "The information and insights contained in this document will be of interest to anyone involved in bringing local knowledge to bear in school curriculum. Drawing upon the efforts of many people over a period of several years, Sidney Stephens has managed to distill and synthesize the critical ingredients for making the teaching of science relevant and meaningful in culturally adaptable ways."



Go to University of AlaskaThe University of Alaska Fairbanks is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity employer, educational institution, and provider is a part of the University of Alaska system. Learn more about UA's notice of nondiscrimination.


Alaska Native Knowledge Network
University of Alaska Fairbanks
PO Box 756730
Fairbanks  AK 99775-6730
Phone (907) 474.1902
Fax (907) 474.1957
Questions or comments?
Last modified August 18, 2006