PBS Utah's Native American & Alaska Native Heritage Collection
November is Native American and Alaska Native Heritage Month. The celebration of Indigenous cultures began as a week-long celebration in 1986, when President Reagan proclaimed the week of November 23-30, 1986 as "American Indian Week." Every President since 1995 has issued annual proclamations designating the month of November as the time to celebrate the cultures, accomplishments, and contributions of Native American and Alaska Native communities.
We celebrate by listening to and learning about Indigenous and native voices from across the continent. You can learn more about the diverse experiences of Native Americans and Alaska Natives with this collection of documentaries. You can stream these films and shows and more on the PBS App.
PBS Utah has a long history of producing documentaries and outreach projects that give voice to Utah’s Native American population. PBS Utah's award-winning documentaries explore stories, past and present, of Native American boarding schools, veterans returning from war, the debate over the Bears Ears Monument, and Utah’s five tribes. Education Resources enhance these films and bring them to life in the classroom. Explore PBS Utah's Native Heritage Education Collection.
What to watch this Native American and Alaska Native Heritage Month
Battle Over Bears Ears | Streaming with Passport
Home From School: The Children of Carlisle (Independent Lens) | Streaming with Passport
Awakening in Taos: The Mabel Dodge Luhan Story| Tue. Nov. 14 at 11 PM &
Streaming with Passport
Indigenize the Plate | Thu. Nov. 23 at 7 PM
The American Buffalo | Now Streaming
Little Bird | Now Streaming
Native America Season 2 | Now Streaming
Native Ball: Legacy of a Trailblazer | Now Streaming
Town Destroyer (America ReFramed) | Now Streaming
Generations Stolen (Local, USA) | Streaming with Passport
ATTLA (Independent Lens) | Streaming with Passport
Scenes from the Glittering World (Independent Lens) | Streaming with Passport
From PBS Utah
Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women
While many cases remain unsolved, what needs to change to protect Utah's Native women?
Art Elevated: The Governor's Mansion Artist Awards
Basket weaver Elsie Holiday’s designs range from traditional Navajo patterns to pop art.
Roots, Race & Culture
Indigenous Food Activism
Learn about the growing indigenous food activist movement.
PBS Utah (formerly KUED) takes a moving and insightful look into the history, operation, and legacy of the federal Indian Boarding School system, whose goal was total assimilation of Native Americans at the cost of stripping away Native culture, tradition, and language.
Healing the Warrior's Heart
This film looks at PTSD through the prism of Native American ceremony, and explores the ancient healing traditions that continue to help returning American Indian soldiers, as well as non-native veterans suffering from this affliction.
The Jingle Dress Project
Fine arts photographer Eugene Tapahe’s idea for “Art Heals: The Jingle Dress Project” came to him in a dream. Legend has it the jingle dance originated from an Ojibwe man who dreamt of its healing power during the Spanish Flu. Now, Eugene travels the west photographing his daughters and friends in National Parks and Monuments as a way to reclaim indigenous spaces and bring healing to the world.
MORE: This video is from This is Utah's episode The Art of Healing
We Shall Remain
Learn about the indigenous Paiute, Goshute, Navajo (Diné), Northwestern Shoshone & Ute peoples who have lived on the land we now call Utah for generations. Unprecedented collaborations between Native and non-Native filmmakers place native voices at the heart of five heartbreaking yet inspiring stories.
Battle Over Bears Ears
At its heart, it’s a battle for homeland and sovereignty. Bears Ears, a remote section of land lined with red cliffs and filled with juniper, sage, is at the center of a fight over who has a say in how Western landscapes are protected and managed.
Awesome Alaskan Kids!
Inspired by Molly of Denali, the “Awesome Alaskan Kids” short series shows real kids from across Alaska filming their own vlogs. Each kid shares a unique perspective, culture and adventure as Alaskans and Alaska Natives.
PBS Learning Media & PBS Utah
- Battle Over Bears Ears(Multi-media interactive lesson) - In December 2016, a distinctive area of Southeastern Utah called Bears Ears was established as a national monument. In this interactive lesson, you will learn about the Bears Ears region through various media and content that will help you understand the evolving issues surrounding this land. By the end of the lesson, we hope you are able to reflect and respond to the different viewpoints and come to your own conclusion about the pros and cons of the monument.
- Native America(PBS LearningMedia for Teachers) reaches back 15,000 years, examining ancient city planning and early systems of science and spirituality and extends to present-day exploration of Indigenous knowledge and language preservation.
Bears Ears Curriculum
Curriculum focusing on the complex social, cultural, and scientific issues surrounding Bears Ears drawing on the principles of Culturally Sustaining Pedagogy. Learn ideas for introduction, role-play, and follow-up ideas to engage students of all levels.
Critically Informed Cultural Texts
Explore challenges and opportunities associated with using culturally sustaining texts in an era of commercially packaged curriculum. Design K-12 lessons that encourage the development of a critically informed stance toward text.
Books and Written Material About and For Indigenous Peoples
Zitkála-Šá: Trailblazing American Indian Composer and Writer
Zitkála-Šá co-composed and wrote the libretto for the first American Indian opera and co-founded the National Council of American Indians to lobby for increased political power for American Indians.
In Their Element
Indigenous leaders protecting our natural resources in the face of the climate crisis.
Native America, Season 2
Season 2 of Native America is a groundbreaking portrait of contemporary Indian Country. This four-part Native directed series reveals the beauty and power of today’s Indigenous world. Smashing stereotypes, it follows the brilliant engineers, bold politicians, and cutting-edge artists who draw upon Native tradition to build a better 21st century.