Historical Society Books Selected for Office of India Education Initiative
“Muskrat and Skunk/Sinkpe na Maka” is a bilingual picture book in Lakota and English published by the South Dakota Historical Society Press and has been selected as one of six books recommended by the BookMark Initiative by the South Dakota Indian Department of Education. .
The BookMark initiative is funded by the Bush Foundation through the Wookiye Project. The six books selected in this first round of the BookMark initiative will provide public, private, tribal, and BIE schools in South Dakota with free books related to culture and educational opportunities for lesson planning and student enjoyment. make it accessible within the school. South Dakota educators, Indian Education Advisory Board representatives, and tribal educators made recommendations to Fred Osborne, Executive Director of the Indian Education Advisory Board. Fred Osborne selected his six finalists to submit to the Indian Education Advisory Board for consideration and approval of books for the BookMark Initiative program. There are plans to select multiple books through this program.
“Muskrat and Skunk/ Sinkpe na Maka”, narrated and illustrated by Donald F. Montileaux and translated into Lakota by Agnes Gay, retells the origins of the drum through the characters of Muskrat and Skunk. The beat of the Lakota drum is understood to mimic the sound of the heartbeat of Mother Earth. Montillo is a contemporary storyteller and a registered member of the Oglala Lakota Nation. He is an award-winning artist, illustrator, presenter, and Lakota cultural consultant.