Sweetgrass Basket

SKU: 9780525475477

Marlene Carvell
Dutton Children's Books
Copyright Date:

Sale price$24.99


Sweetgrass Basket is a free verse novel told in the alternating voices of two Mohawk sisters from Akwesasne who attend Carlisle Indian School at the turn of the century. After their mother's death, Mattie and Sarah Tarbell are sent to residential school in the United States because their father believes it will prove beneficial. The sisters find harsh discipline, bullying, and abuse during their time at the school. In fact one sister is blamed for a theft she did not commit. As punishment for the perceived theft, a strict teacher discards Mattie's precious sweetgrass basket made by her mother. This event devastates the sisters and leads to Mattie's untimely death. This bittersweet novel allows students to experience first-hand the kinds of treatment First Nations children received at residential or boarding schools. Author Marlene Carvell was inspired by her Mohawk husband's family and their stories about attending residential school. Mohawk words and phrases are used effectively throughout the text. Reading Level: 4.5; ATOS Reading Level: 5; Lexile measure 1000. 

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