Symbols for Materials

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The symbols below will be found on many of the review and source notes. Here is their explanation.

Buy books with this symbol from the American Indian Science and Engineering Society catalog:
    160 30th Street, Suite 301
    Boulder, CO 80301
    303-939-0023 for their catalog

Purchases contribute to scholarships and summer science programs for Indian students; books cost same as elsewhere! Illustrated non-descriptive catalog: $1
Buy books with this symbol from Oyate, a Native organization whose purpose is to evaluate books by and about Indian people and to make available good ones from small presses.

    2702 Mathews Street
    Berkeley, CA 94702
    (510) 848-6700

Oyate -- a group of Native writers, artists, teachers -- was formed in the mid-80's "to see that our lives and histories are portrayed honestly and so that all people will know our storiesbelong to us. For Native children, it is a matter of survival to know who they areand what they come from. For all children it is time to learn the truth of history. Only in this way will they come to have the understanding and respect for one another that are necessary for life to continue."
Oyate's book sales contribute to the org's survival. A current catalog of hundreds of books -- mostly from small Native presses -- is available for $1. Oyate conducts workshops for schools and colleges on Native literature for children and related topics.
This symbol means there is a CDROM version (or, rarely, disk-based software) related to the book -- sometimes a version of its story, sometimes supplementary learning activities, or the material itself consists of software.
The pencil and checkbox symbol means you can order this book through catalog sales, usually by phone order with credit card (or school invoicing). Some on-line catalogs may also be indicated; these invariably require credit cards to order on the web. This symbol indicates a commercial supplier, rather than sources whose profits support an Indian cause or org.
This symbol means there is a film or -- more often -- videotape related to the book, sometimes based on its story, sometimes required for supplementary learning activities, or the material itself consists of a videotape.
This symbol means that apparatus or a materials kit (usually for science or math) comes with the material or is required as an extra purchase
This symbol means that the material or has a related package of sound tapes -- music or language, or the material is itself a tape.
Thumbs-down icon means really bad, but the reasons may differ. Some kind of racism, factual inaccuracy, misleading, poorly written. These books may be older ones still in libraries, and still turning up on school recommendation lists. Thumbs-down will generally tell you -- in the actual review -- if some form of remediation should be done, such as retirement from school libraries. In general, no thumbs-down book should ever be assigned class work, nor used for student research. Longer reviews of some books with this icon also try to provide a cultural-historical educational background -- so you can come to know why certain characteristics are so bad from an Indian viewpoint.
Thumbs-up icon means more than just good, it means "essential" but it also means "readily available" from a regular source that can handle school (PO) orders. Unfortunately, some excellent books by Indian authors or organizations are not readily available that way and often soon become unavailable. I wish some of the authors of such books would swallow their pride in self-publication and approach commercial large trade and text publishers (contact phones are given for most of them in review headers). Either the reviewer or (on a double-check, WebMistress) thinks these books are essential to school, college and (if possible) personal libraries. Most of the un-iconed books are ones someone liked well enough to prepare reviews on.
The thumbs-up icon books have been reviewed by more than one person (even if there is only one written review) and have been tested with Indian children of an appropriate age or used in class assignments with older Indian students. Thumbs-down books are usually negatively regarded by more than one reviewer. If 2 reviewers disagree -- one thinks it's good, one bad -- both reviews are reproduced here and no icon is used, although WebMistress's judgement (pet book loves and hates) might tip the balance. Webmistress often asks Indian kids for their opinion. Where a reviw is highly negative, priority is given to judgement of a reviewer from the tribe covered, if it is a story about or from that tribe. You may email-submit reviews or contrary opinions on reviews (please keep it short and be objective: give your reasons). These will be added as Second Looks. If you are connected with author or publisher, you must identify yourself as such at the end of your review.

Thumbs-up and thumbs-down evaluations are not used for ADULT reading-level books, those are simply reviewed. If suitable or desirable (or in use) for Native American college courses -- or if unsuitable or biased, needing something else for balance -- please so indicate. Whether you are submitting a first or second look, please read and follow the review guidelines.

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Webmistress --Paula Giese.Text and graphics copyright 1996

CREDITS: The eagle started life as a real golden eagle photographed as he was being released from the Minnesota Raptor Center, much worked over with graphics utilities for the iridescent abalone-shell wing effect.

Last Updated: Saturday, April 13, 1996 - 11:41:45 PM