*Notable Books For Children - Smithsonian*

*Skipping Stones Book Award for Exceptional Multicultural and Nature/Ecology Books*

*Wordcraft Circle Writer of the Year (Prose - Children's Literature)*

*Wordcraft Circle Mentor of the Year*

Although Jeannie loves her lakeside neighborhood, her feelings are hurt by her schoolmates who live in fancier homes and call her a Lake Rat.

When she confides her troubles to her grandfather, he tells her about his own childhood experiences with teasing. As the story unfolds, the grandfather shares a traditional Seneca story that helps Jeannie to find strength in her Native identity and a new appreciation for the different roles that animals play in nature. This is a quiet book that celebrates family and place and the teachings of Native people. Muskrat Will Be Swimming is based on a real incident in Cheryl Savageau's life.

Muskrat Will Be Swimming will help inspire classroom conversations about:

  • Teasing and bullying
  • Storytelling traditions and customs in Native and non-Native families
  • The Seneca creation story and creation stories in general
  • Traditions of the Sky Woman in Native stories
  • Contemporary Native American families and building connections to tribal identity
  • Native identity and mixed-blood ancestry
  • Significance of dreams in Native culture
  • The role of animals as teachers in Abenaki culture
  • Animals of the forest
  • The Abenaki view towards the natural environment
  • The value of experiences in the natural world for children's growth