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Resources for Teaching

The Center for the Study of Upper Midwestern Cultures offers a number of resources for educators, with opportunities and materials ranging from elementary to college level.

Wisconsin Teachers of Local Culture: This is a network of educators who enhance curriculum with local culture. The WTLC website includes professional development opportunities, lesson plans, descriptions of successful projects, and other resources for educators.

Past Cultural Tours with Students from Randall Elementary School: From 2002-2006, 4th and 5th graders from Randall School in Madison studied local culture during four different year-long cultural tours: the Dane County Cultural Tour, the Hmong Cultural Tour, the Park Street Cultural Tour, the Greenbush Cultural Tour. Each of these websites contains images, student writing, and ideas for how other educators can help their students explore their communities. 

Wisconsin Englishes Project: Our group is working with the full range of languages spoken in the Upper Midwest, past and present. Languages and dialects reflect Upper Midwestern culture and identity and we are looking at regional differences in English, such as distinct vocabulary, pronunciations, idioms and ethnic influences, as well as other languages spoken in Wisconsin. The WEP web site provides a variety of teaching materials, as well as podcasts, public events and information on new research.

Wiigwaasi-Jiimaan: These Canoes Carry Culture is a permanent online exhibit that details the building of a traditional Ojibwe birch bark canoe in 2013. It is designed to teach elements of Ojibwe culture, especially philosophies of wellness, tradition and worldview.

Traditional Storytellers in the Kickapoo Valley: In the 1890s, Mark Wagler recorded narratives from a number of traditional storytellers in the Kickapoo Valley in southwestern Wisconsin. In these podcasts, Wagler introduces stories told by Halsey Rinehart, Dale Muller, and Ray Schlump.