Episode 177: Standardizing Indigenous Erasure with Leilani Sabzalian, Sarah Shear, & Jimmy Snyder

In episode 177, Michael and Dan chat with Leilani Sabzalian, Sarah Shear, & Jimmy Snyder about their new publication in Theory & Research in Social Education titled, “Standardizing Indigenous erasure: A TribalCrit and QuantCrit analysis of K–12 US civics and government standards.”

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Books, Articles and Other Amazing Resources

  1. Sabzalian, L., Shear, S. B., & Snyder, J. (2021). Standardizing Indigenous erasure: A TribalCrit and QuantCrit analysis of K–12 US civics and government standards. Theory & Research in Social Education, 49(3), 321-359.
  2. Shear, S.B., Knowles, R.T., Soden, G., & Castro, A.J. (2015). Manifesting destiny: Re/presentations of Indigenous people in K-12 U.S. history curriculum. Theory & Research in Social Education, 43(1), 68-101.
  3. Sabzalian, L. (2019). Indigenous children’s survivance in public schools. Routledge.
  4. For more on “Safety Zone Theory”:
    1. Lomawaima, K. T., & McCarty, T. L. (2006). “To remain an Indian”: Lessons in democracy from a century of Native American education. Teachers College Press.
    2. Journal of American Indian Education 2014 Special Issue: Examining and Applying Safety Zone Theory: Current Policies, Practices, and Experiences: https://www.jstor.org/stable/i40144222 
    3. Benally, C. (2014). Creating and negotiating Native spaces in public school systems: An Arizona example. Journal of American Indian Education, 53(3), 11–24. https://www.jstor.org/stable/43608728  
  5. Since Time Immemorial Curriculum https://www.k12.wa.us/student-success/resources-subject-area/time-immemorial-tribal-sovereignty-washington-state 
  6. Examples of Essential Understandings
    1. North Dakota Native American Essential Understandings: https://www.nd.gov/dpi/education-programs/indian-education/north-dakota-native-american-essential-understandings  
    2. Essential Understandings of Native Americans in Oregon (click on “Educator Toolkit): https://www.oregon.gov/ode/students-and-family/equity/NativeAmericanEducation/Pages/Senate-Bill-13-Tribal-HistoryShared-History.aspx  
    3. Oceti Sakowin Essential Understandings & Standards: https://indianeducation.sd.gov/ocetisakowin.aspx  
  7. For more information about Dawnland https://dawnland.org and the Upstander Project, including their documentary films, teachers’ guides, and Upstander Academy https://upstanderproject.org 
  8. Dr. Michelle Jacob’s (Yakama) blog, where she discusses how Indigenous “stories have served as a backbone to our Yakama education system long, long, long before settler colonialism and its odd way of doing schooling arrived.”
    1.  You can also check out the free resources on her website, which includes a video where she talks about how young the state of Washington is in relation to Yakama and other Indigenous nations, as well as her books, including The Auntie Way:Stories Celebrating Kindness, Fierceness, and Creativity,  Huckleberries and Coyotes: Lessons from Our More than Human Relations, and Fox Doesn’t Wear a Watch: Lessons from Mother Nature’s Classroom. 
  9. National Congress of American Indians 2019 Report Becoming Visible: A Landscape Analysis of State Efforts to Provide Native American Education for All
  10. National Conference of State Legislators list of federally-recognized and state recognized tribal nations to locate state and tribal nations in your area
  11. National Museum of the American Indian
  12. Episode 128: An Anticolonial Approach to Civic Education with Leilani Sabzalian
  13. Episode 95: Affirming Indigenous Sovereignty with Sarah Shear, Leilani Sabzalian, & Lisa Brown Buchanan
  14. Episode 15: Indigenous (Mis)Representations in U.S. History with Sarah Shear
  15. Find all our episodes pertaining to Indigneous studies here: https://visionsofed.com/category/indigenous-studies/ 


Leilani Sabzalian (Alutiiq) is an Assistant Professor of Indigenous Studies in Education and the Co-Director of the Sapsik‘ʷałá (Teacher) Education Program at the University of Oregon. Her research utilizes Native feminist theories to create spaces to support Indigenous students and Indigenous self-determination in public schools, and prepare teachers to challenge colonialism in curriculum, policy, and practice. Learn more about Dr. Sabzalian at https://education.uoregon.edu/directory/faculty/all/leilanis and on Twitter @leilanisabz.

Sarah B. Shear is an Assistant Professor of Social Studies and Multicultural Education at the University of Washington-Bothell. Dr. Shear examines settler colonialism in K-12 social studies curriculum, teacher education, popular media, and qualitative research methodologies. As a member of the Turtle Island Social Studies Collective, she is committed to collective action to combat oppression in education and academia. Learn more about Dr. Shear at https://sarahshearphd.com and on Twitter @SBShear.

Jimmy Snyder is a PhD candidate in the Critical and Sociocultural Studies in Education program in the College of Education at the University of Oregon. He is a citizen of the Kickapoo Tribe in Kansas. His research interests are Indigenous, anticolonial, and teacher education, social studies methods, and Indigenous studies. He is a 2009 alum of the UO Sapsik’ʷałá  Native teacher graduate program. Jimmy also has a history degree from the University of Kansas and over twenty years’ experience working in tribal communities (in tribal college and reservation schools). He has taught high school social studies on the Kickapoo and Navajo reservations.


We would like to thank Zack Seitz of Wylie High School (TX) and the University of North Texas for his editing skills.

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