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

Curriculum Resources for the Alaskan Environment

Subject Areas: math, social studies, geography, home economics, nutrition

Timeline: two weeks/repeated

Grade Levels: 9-12

Purpose: to give students an opportunity to explore cultural differences culminating with a dinner representative of the area studied


J. and V. Lewis, G. Shriver, T. Gillespie, and D. Werneke
Ethnic Dinners



Square bullet Activities

  • Study a preselected country or geographical area.
  • Learn which foods are prevalent and why.
  • Learn behavior patterns of the local population, including food preparation, art, and music.
  • Prepare a menu and set up an environment to simulate the area studied.

Square bullet Resources

  • student fund; money earned from the Halloween carnival
  • hot lunch program; school cooks; home economics teacher
  • travel agencies (materials on cultures/areas to be studied)
  • international cookbooks
  • film resources (universities, libraries, etc.)
  • regional food resources
  • Cooperative Extension Service
  • city or village offices, for a list of elders


  • To help fund the event, include the entire village at $10 per plate.
  • On the occasion of the dinner, present a program depicting the culture.
  • Develop a menu with local, traditional food:

    gather food: students might set snare one afternoon for ptarmigan and rabbit; check snares a few days later; use whatever is caught; or

    recruit community members to teach trapping and hunting

    butcher the meat; tan the hides; collect tundra greens

    prepare food; serve for the entire school

    village involvement could lead to a complete potlatch

    rewrite the entire school menu using food which would be available around the village

    send off samples of Native food for nutritional analysis to USDA.

  • Provide village elders a feast on Thanksgiving or other occasions:

    pick and freeze berries ahead of time for cranberry pudding and Eskimo ice cream

    plan a balanced meal; order food that must be shipped; write invitations

    prepare and serve food; provide entertainment

    deliver hot food to any elders who are homebound.


Carving and Jewelry Co-Op

Fund-Raising: Concessions/Raffle/Auction/T-Shirt Sales

Rummage Sales

Mail Order Business

School-Based Enterprises

Café Operation

Open House

Community Use of School Library

Village Recreation

Guest Speakers


Local Livelihood

On-the-Job/Cooperative Education

College Preparation

Teacher's Aide Training

Managing Community Affairs

Land Claims Brainstorming

The Corporation Game or Alaska Monopoly

Reconveyances: ANCSA Studies

Resource Development Options

City Council Meeting Simulation

Mock Board of Directors Meeting

REAA School Board Trip

Your Village

Family Tree

Village Archaeology

Building Traditional Dwellings

Cultural Heritage Projects

Traditional Hunters Manual

Ethnic Dinners

Following the Iditarod Dog Race

Visit to the Tribes

Trip to Mexico

Cross-Country Skiing

Firearms Handling

First-Aid Training

Christmas Shopping      



Go to University of AlaskaThe University of Alaska Fairbanks is an affirmative action/equal opportunity employer and educational institution and is a part of the University of Alaska system.


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 17, 2006