Assimilation Lesson Plan


  1. Spiral of Fire: Choose one or more segments to watch from Spiral of Fire.  Below are questions and ideas that students should watch for when they view the program or view the video segments on this web site. Students will need to take notes.

What to watch for:

On the Spiral of Fire DVD

On this web site

Background for Teachers:  Chief Henry Lambert dresses in the feathers and regalia of a plains Indian because that's what the tourists want to see.
Questions for Students: Has Chief Henry been assimilated into mainstream culture? Does he know who he is?

Chapter One
'"The Journey Begins"


Background for Teachers:  The mother of one of the Cherokee football players, Lynn Taylor, says, "We Indians here feel that they don't treat us equal."
Questions for Students:  Can a football team carry the self-esteem of a whole tribe on its backs?

Chapter Two

Identity & Assimilation

Background for Teachers:  Amy Grant says, "I began to realize the pain that we Native peoples have and carry. Several of the local churches were getting ready to acknowledge what the church as the Christian churches had not done over the years -- to recognize the Native spirituality that we have. In trying to force us to be Christians and to not allow us to continue to have our own traditional ceremonies and to discredit it."
Questions for Students: Do you think Christianity was a tool to assimilate Native Americans into white culture?

Chapter Nine



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