Diné Be'azee': Diné Traditional Medicine

byMarilyn Dempsey

Sage brush, juniper, and pinon are our medicine. Traditional Diné medicine plants have been used by Diné for many generations. Knowledge of these traditional Diné plants is important for indigenous Diné youth to keep alive. Students need to be aware of how Diné language and culture can be, and is a part of science through the knowledge of plants and medicine; thereby gaining insight to a multicultural world. There is also Western medicine and how it works with the human body to fight infection and relieve pain. Further, how Western drugs are made from plants will also give students comparative information on traditional Diné medicine and Western medicine. Students will acquire this knowledge through research and activities using various media.

State standards emphasized in this unit are the scientific processes leading to questioning, investigating, testing, evaluating, and communicating information. This Inquiry Process will be embedded into all areas of the unit of learning about traditional Diné medicines and Western medicine. History and Nature of Science standard, and Science in Personal and Social Perspectives standard will be embedded for students to utilize and apply the scientific process. The Arizona Native Language Standards will also be integrated into the unit.


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