Virtual Field Trip: Native American Stories

Virtual Field Trip: Native American Stories

Three storytellers shared unique insights from their experiences as Native Americans in the National Geographic Virtual Field Trip: Native American Stories. We traveled to New Mexico where a dedicated conservationist reinvents maps through the Zuni Map Art Project. Then, we visited the Flathead Reservation in Montana where a photographer challenges stereotypes through journalism. And finally, we took a quick trip to Ontario where a 20-year-old artist examines what it means to be Indigenous in a colonialist world.

The program is now available on our YouTube channel and features:

  • Jim Enote: Jim is a National Geographic Explorer, artist, farmer, and member of the Zuni tribe in New Mexico. For over 20 years, he has tackled land and water conservation issues around the world, and he is committed to conserving and protecting native cultures. He is the director of the Colorado Plateau Foundation and the former director of the A:shiwi A:wan museum in Zuni, New Mexico. He is also the creator of the Zuni Map Art Project, which displays connections between stories, places, and identity in the Zuni culture.
  • Tailyr Irvine: Tailyr is a National Geographic Explorer and member of the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation in Montana. As a photographer, Tailyr covers stories about Indigenous peoples in North America. Her current project, “Reservation Mathematics: Navigating Love in Native America,” examines “blood quantum,” a controversial practice that determines eligibility for tribal membership based on their percentage of tribal blood.
  • Tehatsistahawi “Tsista” Kennedy: Tsista is a National Geographic Photo Camp alumnus and member of the #GenGeo community. He belongs to the Anishinaabe and Onyota’a:ká nations. He is an artist who calls attention to issues facing Indigenous people.

To learn more about Native American heritage visit

Subjects:  Geography, Social Studies, History

Content recommended for grades 4-8 

This Virtual Field Trip is hosted by Krista Strahan, and is presented in partnership with the DC Arts and Humanities Education Collaborative.

13 thoughts on “Virtual Field Trip: Native American Stories

  1. I think it would be nice if every year you do a different demographic of certain Native American tribes. There are so many throughout this country that each tribe deserves to be spotlighted and shared!

  2. Thank you for sharing this virtual field trip! It is so important to honor and study the experiences of Native Americans, while recognizing how diverse these experiences are. This field trip offers unique views into three different cultures and how contemporary indigenous artists are sharing their peoples’ stories through art. Jim Enote’s reminder that “north doesn’t always need to be up” is particularly powerful.

  3. These “virtual field trips” are very cool. When school districts don’t have the time or money to go on in-person field trips, or places are simply out of reach and inaccessible to most people, this is an excellent alternative. I firmly believe that visuals are one of the most powerful educational tools around, and something like this really allows one to immerse oneself in another place surrounded by another culture, really experiencing what that is like in a way most people otherwise wouldn’t be able to. Very interesting concept.

  4. Thank You so much for this. It is wonderful to recognize and appreciate Native American culture and their stories!

  5. I, too, would like a virtual field trip for first graders. It would also be great to have the Lakota/Nakota/Dakota highlighted in a virtual field trip. Thank you for all your great programming.

  6. I enjoy learning about Native Americans, their philosophy and their struggles. Can you tell me how many tribes were warrior tribes against other tribes? Were any of the tribes content within their own region or area, or was there always conflict between tribes?

  7. I am Bhuvana from India and would like to register for my daughter who is 11 years old. Don’t think it allows registration ms from any other country apart from the US. Kindly clarify and help me with registration from India. Thanks.

    1. We welcome international participation. If the time difference is a barrier, you are also welcome to view the event in the following days on our NatGeoEducation YouTube channel.

  8. This sounds awesome for my class but they are at lunch and recess from 12:50-1:45. Is there a way to register for it and watch it after the fact? Or is it only live?

    1. Great question, Liz! All of our Virtual Field Trips are available to view at any time after the event. We will post a link to our YouTube Channel on the following day. We invite you and your students to join us at a time that works best for you!

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