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Raising Native American Children off the Reservation - Essay Example

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 The writer of this essay discusses raising her children both on and off their native reservation. Many tribal parents believe that it is necessary to raise one’s tribal children on the reservation for them to have an understanding of their culture and traditions. …
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Raising Native American Children off the Reservation
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Download file to see previous pages This bothered me sometimes until the bigger picture, their future became clearer. Raising children off the reservation can be both beneficial and constructive depending on the situations.
In the beginning, I questioned myself why I was doing this? Was it to rebel from a community that I did not feel connected to or was I thinking about the importance of my kid's life? Keeping them off the reservation was not endangering them or making them culturally insensitive. I found it to be protective and looking at the well being of their future. Many would disagree with me and say I was selfish because one should be respectful of his or her culture. Calling my children names, frowning at them and not being allowed to participate in certain activities they wanted were some of the problems my children faced for not being fully involved within their tribe. I thought this was not crippling their opportunities, but allowing them to see what else was out in the world and not in the reservation. Most Native Americans find it, okay not to be educated, and instead, opt to work for their Tribal Casino and Resort. This was not going to be the situation for my children.
During my kids' youth was apparently the time when Native American education was not taken seriously. At this point, the damage on the youth revolved around things such as addictions, lack of world experiences, good healthcare, and crime. Originally, we had opted to raise our kids in the reservation because it was convenient for them to attend tribal schools where it was inexpensive and sometimes had free childcare. The older the children got, it became obvious their education had to be a priority in our lives; thus, we decided to move. With graduation rates at an all-time low and test scores getting lower, it was evident this was the best move, my children. I wanted my children to have the opportunity to learn and have new experiences.
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