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'Iolani School Indigenous Peoples' Day: More for Educators

Resources for Educators

Access via 'Iolani School Libraries databases
Help with accessing the databases off-campus also available on the databases page.

"A Curriculum of Aloha? Colonialism and Tourism in Hawai'i's Elementary Textbooks"
Julie Kaomea
Curriculum Inquiry, Vol. 30, No. 3 (Autumn, 2000), pp. 319-344 (26 pages)

United Nations

Native American Boarding School Era

US Indian Boarding School History

The truth about the U.S. Indian boarding school policy has largely been written out of the history books. There were more than 523 government-funded, and often church-run, Indian Boarding schools across the U.S. in the 19th and 20th centuries. Indian children were forcibly abducted by government agents, sent to schools hundreds of miles away, and beaten, starved, or otherwise abused when they spoke their Native languages.

Intro to Boarding School History

Beginning with the Indian Civilization Act Fund of March 3, 1819 and the Peace Policy of 1869 the United States, in concert with and at the urging of several denominations of the Christian Church, adopted an Indian Boarding School Policy expressly intended to implement cultural genocide through the removal and reprogramming of American Indian and Alaska Native children to accomplish the systematic destruction of Native cultures and communities. The stated purpose of this policy was to “Kill the Indian, Save the Man.”

Professional Development - Annual Teach-In

Hawaiian Government - Pre-Statehood

Essential Understandings

  • Celebrating and acknowledging diversity of Indigenous Peoples is not about victimization, or shame, or blame. 
    • Decolonization is about representing the Indigenous voices and perspectives; making space for multiple voices
  • Always speak in present tense : Indigenous people and culture survives and thrives.
  • Land concepts :
    • Indigenous concept of land is not proprietary, it is a reciprocal relationship with Mother Earth - land is to be cared for not viewed as for individual profit / gain
    • Land acknowledgement statements should position Indigenous Peoples as OF the land and or belonging TO the land (as opposed to “land of the … peoples”). 
  • When reviewing materials with students (such as textbooks, articles, etc), be aware of wording choices and their connotations, confront othering: problematic examples:
    • White man plays the drum while Native Indian beats the drum
    • A white soldier is murdered by natives, but a native is killed by soldiers
  • Tribes vary from each other, therefore authentic tribal voices need to be heard; someone from one tribe cannot tell the story of another tribe


Information from the 2023 International Conference of Indigenous Archives, Libraries, and Museums, “Honoring and Elevating Indigenous Culture and Knowledge Systems, Oklahoma City, October 2023.

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Important Questions in the Study of Primary Sources infographic

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Thanks for reviewing a draft of
"Important Questions" go to
Dr. Melissa Perkins,
'Iolani School History Faculty
2021 Hawai'i History Teacher of the Year

Hawai'i Resources

Hawai'i State Archives

University of Hawai'i

Bishop Museum

Hula Preservation Society

Ka'iwakīloumoku - Kamehameha Schools

Legislative Research

‘Ōlelo No‘eau : Knowledge


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