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AIH-13: Utah's American Indian Tribes Today

Group Size

Small Groups


Utah LessonPlans


Utah's American Indian tribes add to the diversity of cultures in Utah today.

Background for Teachers

This is the last of five lessons in the Seventh Grade American Indian History Lesson Plan Unit:

Instructional Procedures

Essential Question 1: What is the status of Utah's American Indian Tribes today?

Essential Question 2: How do Utah's American Indians preserve cultural identity today?

  1. Read the introductory book The Ledgerbook of Thomas Blue Eagle with an explanation of how times have changed.
  2. Divide students into five groups.
  3. Assign each group one of Utah's American Indian tribes.
  4. Hand out information sheets on each of the tribes today.
  5. Give students time to read the information and highlight essential points. Then fill out the essential information sheet.
  6. The students' assignment is to design a learning ladder by typing their facts/points, affixing/gluing each one on a rung, and then hooking the rungs of the ladder together (about ½ inch apart) and adding pictures, illustrations, or related items—one on each rung. The illustrations must correspond with the information on the rung.
  7. Students will create learning ladder out of supplies provided.
  8. Groups present their learning ladders to the class, explaining their information.

Assessment Plan

  1. Following a discussion on each of the tribes, students will respond to one or all of the following essay questions:
    • In what ways do Utah 's American Indians add to the diversity of Utah today?
    • Why is it important for us to encourage, support and promote diversity in Utah?
    • What might happen if a group does not feel accepted in the community?
  2. In their responses, students must make direct reference to the learning they obtained through the activity, and support their conclusions with details from their research.
  3. Assessment of activity: evaluation of ladder and presentation.
    • Allow one class period for presentations. Groups must be ready to present during that class period. If that means homework, let the students know.
    • Create a rubric with the information you want to grade. Consider: did the group cover all points on the essential information sheet? Were the points correct and in a logical order? Was the project neat? Did the students follow instructions.
    • Score the rubric as the groups present. Grading is accomplished at the time of presentation, and if you have any questions the students are available.


Utah State Office of Education
Social Studies Enhancement Committee
American Indian History

Lesson Plan Writers:

  • Gloria Thompson - Ute
  • Nanette Watson
  • Jeanette Badback - White Mesa Ute
  • Don Mose - Navajo
  • Merrillee Chamberlain - Paiute
  • Venita Tavepont - Ute
  • Rebecca Bennally - Navajo
  • Tauna Christianson
  • Gayle Buxton
  • Judith Hegewald
Under the Direction of the Indian Education Specialist, Shirlee Silversmith. Special thanks to Dolores Riley.

Created: 01/31/2005
Updated: 02/03/2018