The Medicine Game

I was flipping through stations the other night and I came across PBS showing The Medicine Game.

It’s a film about two Onondaga youth who grew up playing lacrosse and dreamed of playing for Syracuse. It displayed both their accomplishments on the field and in the class room. It was very interesting.

Unfortunately, the post show discussion on the American Reframed episode that this was shown on is not included on the web episode. The point I found the most interesting that the Native American guest (I think one of the film’s producers) talked about was some of the things that could lead to Native American youth having a difficult time in the traditional US school system. She mentioned that in Native American culture, education of the youth is very much community oriented. Your parents teach you specific things, your grandparents teach you specific things, your aunts and uncles teach you specific things. Everyone is involved. Then you pull these kids of their communities and put them in public schools where the education falls mainly on the individual, your grades are your responsibility, your assignments are your responsibility, your studying is your responsibility, your overall success is basically solely your responsibility. It’s a very different experience than what they have grown up with up to that point.