American Indian Education Program

Monthly Newsletter - December 2020

Boozhoo District 196 Teachers!

This month's Indian Education Newsletter will focus on the Dakota People

Background Beadword by: Holly Young (Standing Rock Sioux Tribe)


District 196 - Rosemount, Apple Valley & Eagan Public Schools - is located south of MNÍSOTA WAKPÁ (Minnesota River). To the east is WAKPÁ Tȟáŋka (Mississippi River). In the Dakotah language, MNÍSOTA WAKPÁ translates to Clear Waters and WAKPÁ Tȟáŋka means Great River. At the confluence of these rivers is known as Bdote (where two rivers come together). This is the place of creation for the Dakota People.


We want to acknowledge that our district resides within Mni Sota Makoce - A Dakota Place and that this land has been the homeland of the Dakota people and the Očhéthi Šakówiŋ (Seven Council Fire) for every generation since their creation at Bdote. Mni Sota - the land where waters reflect the clouds - is Dakota land.


We encourage all members of District 196 to join us in learning more about the OYATE (the people), contributions, sovereignty and treaty rights of the Dakota People. District 196 will continue to strengthen our relationship with Mni Sota’s sovereign nations and indigenous communities, families & students.


For further information, please explore the following resources or contact District 196 American Indian Education Staff

Dakota Oyate

From the Dakota Wicohan: The Dakota are the keepers of the eastern door to the greater D/L/Nakota Nation.


The Dakota are comprised of four bands:


  • Mdewakanton: The Spirit Lake People
  • Sissetonwan: People of the Fish Village(s)
  • Wahpetonwan: The People Dwelling Among the Leaves
  • Wahpekute: The Shooters Among the Leaves People


Today, in Mni Sota, there are 4 Federally-recognized Dakota communities and 1 non-Federally recognized community:




Online Resources for Educators

Dakhota Iapi - The Dakota Language

Quick Lesson.... What Dakota Language words to you know?


Dakota ...... Friend or Ally

Oyate ........ the People

Mni ............ Water

Tanka ........ Big

Haha ......... Curling/Ribbon-like

Sota .......... Cloud

Mato ......... Bear

Mde/Bde... Lake

Makhá ...... Earth or Bank (as in land around a lake)

To ............. Blue

Ska ........... White


You have been speaking the Dakota language more often than you realize. Check out the resources below to help with pronunciation.


Online Dakota Language Resources for Teachers:

The Dakota War of 1862 and The Dakota 38 + 2

From Dakota Wicohan: DAKOTA WAR OF 1862


After the Treaty of 1851, the Dakota are restricted to a reservation along the Minnesota River. The United States creates two primary agencies to administer control and assimilate Dakota people, these are the Upper Sioux and Lower Sioux Agencies.The Untied States breaches the terms of the treaty, failing to provide food and services promised. Local traders refuse to give out food from their stores. With rampant disease, failing crops and starvation threatening, Dakota people revolt against the United States of America.


The War of 1862 begins. Chief Taoyateduta becomes head war chief. Villages are split on the war. A group of Christian converts object to the war, helping local farmers escape attack. Others join the war effort and start attacking local towns and the regional military post, Fort Ridgely. After two months of fighting, the Dakota begin to lose the war. Thousands of non-combatants (women, children, elders) begin to flee Minnesota.


The war ends on December 26th, 1862 with the largest mass hanging in US history. 38 (+ 2) Dakota warriors are executed in Mankato, MN. The state of Minnesota proclaims all Dakota people illegal within its boundaries.


Online Resources for Teachers




Books on the Dakota War of 1862

The Dakota People Today: SPOTLIGHT