By Mike Goodman 

Last year was the first year in American history that a sitting U.S. President officially recognized Indigenous Peoples’ Day, which was through a proclamation by President Joe Biden on Oct. 8, 2021.

As we approach this year’s Indigenous Peoples’ Day on Oct. 10, as well as Day of the Dead on Nov. 1-2, the Smithsonian’s National Museum of the American Indian (NMAI) here in Southwest has planned programming focused on these notable events. For more information, visit

2022 Indigenous Peoples’ Day Curriculum Teach-In

Sovereignty and Treaties

Saturday, October 1, 12–3 p.m. ET 

Online | Register at:

The NMAI and Teaching for Change are hosting an online teach-in with keynote speaker Rebecca Nagle and interactive workshops. Museum education experts, Teaching for Change, and K–12 teachers will share curriculum and teaching strategies and explore the National Museum of the American Indian’s Essential Understandings for teaching about Indigenous peoples’ histories and their experiences around treaties and sovereignty today.

Workshops will feature classroom resources from the museum’s online education portal Native Knowledge 360° and the Zinn Education Project. The teach-in will be held online via Zoom.

Professional development credits provided. ASL interpretation for keynote and selected sessions.

Youth in Action | Indigenous Peoples’ Day: Transformative Teaching 

Monday, October 10, 1 p.m.

Online | Register at: 

How is teaching a form of activism? This Indigenous Peoples’ Day program highlights Native youth who are incorporating Indigenous voices into elementary through high school education and promoting inclusive conversations in U.S. classrooms. Leilani Sabzalian (Alutiiq) will moderate the discussion between panelists Kourtney Kawano (Kanaka ʻŌiwi [Native Hawaiian]), Charitie Ropati (Village of Kongiganak, Alaska) and Amy Spotted Wolf (Tohono O’odham/Hidatsa).

This program is free, but advance registration is required. A direct link will be emailed to registrants 24–48 hours in advance. A recording will be available on demand following the premier.

This program is part of the Youth in Action: Conversations about Our Future series, which features young Native activists and changemakers from across the Western Hemisphere who are working towards equity and social justice for Indigenous peoples.

Program supported by The Coca-Cola Foundation. It is in English with Spanish subtitles.

Día de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) Special Concert with Quetzal 

Saturday, Oct. 29, 2 p.m.

The NMAI and the National Museum of the American Latino invite you to celebrate the return of the ancestors with a special Día de los Muertos concert featuring the Grammy award-winning band Quetzal. Quetzal is a bilingual rock group with roots in the cultural and social justice landscape of East Los Angeles. Its goal is to create great music that tells the stories of marginalized people’s struggles and resistance. An “ofrenda” (altar) will be featured in the museum’s atrium from Oct. 26 through Nov. 2. Visitors can also create paper butterflies for a display in honor of their loved ones.

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