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Office of Native Education




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Roger Fernandes


Updated 5/19/2017


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

Middle School Curriculum

Washington State History
Unit 1: Territory and Treaty Making: The Point No Point Treaty
Unit 1: The Walla Walla Treaty Council of 1855
Unit 2: - available Spring 2017
Unit 3: - available Spring 2017

U.S. History
Unit 1: Fighting for Independence and Framing the Constitution: Revolution and Constitution in Indian Country
Unit 2: Slavery, Expansion, and Removal: Jackson, Marshall, and Indian Removal
Unit 3: Civil War and Reconstruction: Indian Treaties: Goals and Effects
Unit 4: Development and Struggles in the West: The Dawes Act

Unit 1     U.S. History
Fighting for Independence and Framing the Constitution: Revolution and Constitution in Indian Country

Historical Era
1776 - 1815: Conflict and Alliance

STI Unit Overview
Level 1
Students will read an article about how the US Constitution's Supremacy and Commerce Clauses set up relationships with Indian nations that is still in effect today. Depending on reading level, students can complete a crossword puzzle and/or complete the study guide.

Level 2
Building on Level 1, this lesson explores the ideals and realities of the enforcement of tribal treaties. Students will complete a graphic organizer that asks them to explain and provide examples of Constitutional ideals, including treaties being the "Supreme law of the land." The Treaty of Greenville (1795) with Northeastern tribes as well as examples of treaties in the Northwest will serve as exemplars regarding the ideal of a treaty agreement and the realities endured by nearly all Indian nations who entered into treaties with the US Government. This level is taught in the context of your Constitution unit when you teach about the structure of the document as well as the ideals contained in the Bill of Rights.

Level 3
Students build on their Level 1 and 2 activities by researching issues in their area that pertain to treaty rights. In groups of three they will write, produce, and release a public service announcement that defends their position on the enforcement of treaty rights.

STI Essential Questions

  1. How does physical geography affect Northwest tribes' culture, economy, and where they choose to settle and trade?
  2. What is the legal status of the tribes who negotiated or who did not enter into United States treaties?

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

OSPI-Developed Assessments for Social Studies
Constitutional Issues

Unit Developed By
Shana Brown (Yakama descendent)




Download Curriculum
Level 1 | Level 2 | Level 3

Corresponding Videos
Tribal Perspectives American History in the Northwest

Native Homelands Along the Lewis and Clark Trail

Contemporary Voices 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.