Early Education of Native Americans

830 Words3 Pages
Native Americans put up a good fight in defending their homelands against foreign invaders. Unfortunately, they suffered defeat and realized they would have to adapt to a new way of life. The battle for their lands was over, but the battle for their identities would just begin. However, it would not be the hardened warriors engaging in this conflict. Instead, the young Native American children would witness first-hand the American government’s solution to the Indian problem. Boarding schools were established to assimilate Native American children into white society. These boarding schools had both positive and negative impacts on the children. Education was seen as the key to saving the Indians and would be forced upon them if necessary (Calloway, 425). The adults of Native American tribes were the first target for this approach (Calloway, 425). However, the plan backfired due to many adults resisting the assimilation project (Calloway, 425). The next step was to go after easier targets; the children (Calloway, 425). It proved to be a haunting experience for the children as many were pulled out of their own mothers’ arms (Calloway, 426). Some children were already attending schools located on the reservation (Calloway, 426). The education reformers thought it was best to relocate the children to school off the reservation (Calloway, 426). They wanted to isolate the children from their Indian ways and that meant taking them away from family and culture (Calloway, 426). At
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