Protesters Establish School at Camp

A make-shift school has been set up at site of Dakota Access protest

Published 08/29 2016 07:40PM

Updated 08/29 2016 07:40PM

As more and more protesters arrive at the camp, it starts to take on the feel of a small town.
 
"This is really historic"
Kids swarm around Alayna Eagle Shield.
 
It's the teacher in her.
"I'm the Lakota language specialist here at Standing Rock at the Language and Culture Institute," says Eagle Shield.
Protesters selected Eagle Shield to run the school set up at the camp near Cannon Ball.
"The school is called "Defenders of the Water School"
The curriculum is still a work in progress...the school's only been open a few days.
This tent is the main classroom where kids learn story telling, drum making, cooking, leadership and traditional Lakota.
"I want to learn different languages," says one of the kids in the class.
"One thing led to another and we have a school.  I just went to the resources and made a schedule and kids showed up," says Eagle Shield who is even working in some math and science lessons.
"There's a lot of certified teachers that are here and they offered to teach math.  We just came from the river, we talked about plants."
As she looks around the camp, Eagle Shield know there's a living history there.
A togetherness that hasn't been seen since the Battle of Little Big Horn or following Wounded Knee.
"This is a school they'll be able to tell their grandchildren about. That they were a part of.  A lot of them haven't heard these stories, haven't heard traditions or things like this talked about in their every day lives."
The make-shift school has no chairs, no tables, no blackboard.
But Eagle Shield is sure, there's no better place to teach her kids about history.
 
The protest camp swelled over the weekend as news spread across the country.
Organizers say more than 15-hundred people are camped there, depending on the day.
Remember -- It all started in April with about 30 people..
 

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