Books by Yvonne Wakim Dennis

Released: Jan. 1, 2013

"Professionals and parents can probably pull a few interesting activities and anecdotes from this book, but the individual parts do not add up to a cohesive whole. (resources, bibliography, index [not seen]) (Nonfiction. 8-11)"
Ralph Nader, Khalil Gibran and Danny Thomas: What do they have in common? Read full book review >
Released: Nov. 1, 2009

More a guide for teachers and parents than for kids, this comprehensive volume offers much information about Native cultures past and present. A timeline, sidebars, lists, maps and a variety of projects and activities involve readers in a broad learning experience, though in trying to cover so much ground about so many Native groups in the introduction and first chapter, the volume starts overly broad and didactic. In the many activities offered, the authors do not include the making of ceremonial objects or clothing, as they don't want to encourage children to "play Indian," which is offensive to Native people. However, this spirit seems contradicted in such activities as puppet shows, crafting a Seminole design patchwork baseball cap, sculpting a Pueblo storyteller doll and making an Ojibway seasons apron. Still, the book includes a wealth of information and activities for classroom teachers or parents creating a home learning program. (glossary, list of Native American museums and cultural centers, list of festivals and powwows, bibliography) (Nonfiction. 7-10)Read full book review >
Released: March 1, 2003

A well thought-out, neatly executed, and extremely attractive volume that strives to fulfill the promise of its title. There are more than 500 Native American cultures: on two-page profiles arranged geographically, the authors focus on about 26 groups from the Haudenosaunee (the Six Iroquois Nations) of New York to the Iñupiat of Alaska. Striking color photos of children in both traditional and contemporary activities adorn each, along with a fact box giving population, communities, and people of note. A map of the US locates them across the country. The authors strive to give their young readers the sense of the struggle to preserve traditional cultures and values alongside a very contemporary life with activities every child will recognize. They do it in a lively style, too, full of rhetorical "did you know?" queries, a sprinkling of exclamation points, and bits about the code talkers and skywalkers. Information is sometimes fascinating, or even touching—state senator Bill Yellowtail asked for his Crow clan's counsel before he ran for office; Supai, in Arizona, can only get mail via pack-mule train. There's even a page for Native people living in cities; after all, New York City has the largest Native American population in the country. An invaluable and attractive resource, particularly for younger children. (resources for further study, glossary, index) (Nonfiction. 7-11)Read full book review >