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Updated 5/19/2017


Since Time Immemorial: Tribal Sovereignty in Washington State
High School Grade Levels

High School Curriculum

U.S. History
Unit 1: Our Foundation: Foundational Documents and the Boldt Decision (Boldt I and II)
Unit 2: Industrialization and the Emergence of the United States as a World Power: The Allotment Act
Unit 3: Reform, Prosperity, and Depression: Indian Reorganization Act
Unit 4: World War II, The Cold War, and International Relations: Termination and Relocation
Unit 5: Available Spring 2017
Unit 6: Entering a New Era: Nation-Building, Gaming and Self-Determination

Contemporary World Problems
Unit 1: Human Rights - Constitutional Issues: A Tribal Perspective
Unit 2: Environmental Issues: The Boldt Decision
Unit 3: Available Spring 2017
Unit 4: Civic Action and the Economy: Nation-Building and Taxation

Unit 4     Contemporary World Problems
Civic Action and the Economy: Nation-Building and Taxation

Historical Era
The Present: Nation Building

STI Unit Overview
Level 1:
By watching oral testimonies about the importance of tribal traditions and values by identifying misconceptions about Indians and taxes, and by reading and discussing the article, "Taxing Times in Native America", by Gabe Galanda.

In a seminar, students will use evidence from the text to:

  • Identify and explain how the US Constitution determines the tax status of federally recognized tribes. (Commerce Clause).
  • Explain why tribal individuals and some businesses pay federal tax but generally do not pay state taxes.
  • Explain one exception where tribal members do pay state taxes.
  • Explain why it is difficult for tribes to generate revenue.
  • Identify one instance where a tribe collects state taxes.
  • Identify one non-Indian organization that a local tribe contributes to.

Level 2:
After completing Level 1, students will create graphic organizers that compare tribal and state revenue generation in order to analyze the disparities between the two systems.

Level 3:
This builds on Levels 1 and 2. To prepare for the Government Revenue and Responsibility CBA, the class will use the conflict between Thurston County and The Chehalis Tribe as a case study to reinforce responsible research practices and analysis process. If your class is well aware of the CBA process, they can go straight to their own projects. However, it might be valuable for them to know how to find reliable tribal sources.

STI Essential Questions

  1. What is the legal status of the tribes who negotiated or who did not enter into the United States treaties?
  2. What do local tribes do to meet the challenges of reservation life? What do these tribes, as sovereign nations, do to meet the economic and cultural needs of their tribal communities?

Common Core Standards for English/Language Arts
This unit has not yet been aligned with CCSS.

OSPI-Developed Assessments for Social Studies
Government Revenue and Responsibility

Unit Developed By
Shana Brown (Yakama descendant)

Download Curriculum
Level 1 | Level 2 | Level 3

Corresponding Videos
Contemporary Voices Along the Lewis and Clark Trail

Native Homelands Along the Lewis and Clark Trail



Creative Commons License
Except where otherwise noted, "Since Time Immemorial: Tribal Sovereignty in Washington State" by Office of Superintendent of Public Instruction in partnership with the Federally Recognized Tribes in Washington State is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License. All logos are property of their respective owners.