St. Margaret’s Honors Native American Heritage Month With Pow Wow Dancing and Education
The Upper School’s Tartan Inclusion and Diversity Education student leadership group organized an educational and engaging program that recognized Native American culture across all four divisions on Monday, welcoming pow wow dancers and Native American food and giving insight on Native American history as part of Native American Heritage Month.
The pow wow dancers were introduced by a TIDE member, who first educated students on the history of pow wows and how the celebrations united indigenous people across tribes after removal periods took them out of their territories. The dancers—Sean Snyder, Adrian Stevens and Shelby Snyder—share their dancing and cultural knowledge at events around the world, and were brought to St. Margaret’s through a connection to the family of Upper School senior and TIDE leader Shea Hueston.
The dancers spoke to students about their Native American lineage and explained the significance and symbolism of their dance styles, which ranged from grass dance to fancy shawl to war dance, before performing. In the Middle School, the final dance was a group celebration with more than 20 Middle School students taking part.
After the Upper School performance, students were able to try traditional Native American fry bread organized by the Hueston family, including Shea and alumna Kinsale Hueston ’18.
“This is important learning as it relates to United States history, especially as we near Thanksgiving and look to honor those who are indigenous to our land,” said Victor Cota, St. Margaret’s director of equity and inclusion and TIDE sponsor. “The TIDE students deserve a lot of credit for organizing an educational and engaging program and lifting up the cultures represented in our community.”
National Native American Heritage Month takes place each November and recognizes the significant contributions the first Americans made to the establishment and growth of the United States.