The People of Cascadia 

Pacific Northwest Native American History
written and illustrated by Heidi Bohan

Activity Kits for Educators

Hands-on, field-tested, authentic activities representing the culture of the people of the Pacific Northwest using natural materials and traditional techniques which can be implemented by educators and parents. These activities directly complement teachings from 'The People of Cascadia- Pacific Northwest Native American History' and can be implemented as curriculum components and support the new Washington State 'Since Time Immemorial' curriculum.

Classroom Activity Kits are single themed activities designed for typical class sizes of 25 or more, with People of Cascadia Activity Sheets, props and worksheets which can be used in future years, along with enough supplies and materials for each student to complete an individual project. Replenishment kits are available for future years, limited to two sets per kit order, per year.

Classroom Activity Kits


Hands-on activities using authentic materials and techniques which can be implemented in the classroom. These activities reinforce the information learned in 'The People of Cascadia' and were developed and tested in the classroom over many years of working with teachers and students. They are simple enough for teachers to implement with basic tools and skills, and for students to accomplish successfully adding a deeper understanding of the culture of the People of Cascadia.

Each kit comes with the necessary tools and materials to implement an activity for 25 students along with 'People of Cascadia Activity Sheets' with instructions, along with support materials and props such as historic images and project samples.

To order kits or for more information please contact:
By email: hbohan@peoplepc.com; phone: 425-549-0093

Lead times will quoted at time of order, currently 10-14 days.
All major credit cards accepted.

Cattail Mat Houses

Summer House Diorama: Possible extension activity using modeling clay.

Students will see an artifact model of traditional sewn cattail mat and learn about cattails and their importance in daily life for insulation, mattresses, seating and more. Students from 8 -80 enjoy this activity.

Each student will make a small cattail mat using a 6" needle, natural fiber cordage, and cattail leaves. These model mats can be used to make 'summer shelter' diorama's to replicate cattail mat shelters used during the gathering seasons.

Kit includes: Artifact cattail mat model 6"x 8" (+/-) cattails prepared and cut to length for 25) 3"x5" (+/-) mats, 25 6" plastic needles, hemp cordage and raffia cut to length, instructions with images, cattail mat line art coloring sheets

Kit: 100.00  (1.25/additional students)

Cattail Mat replenishment

 Cattails, hemp cordage and raffia prepared for 25 student mats.

Kit replenishment: $50.00  (add 1.50/ for extra students, max 10/class)


Tule Mat Houses
Sorry, not available
at this time

Identical to the Cattail Mat House Activity, above, but using tule's instead of cattails. Tule mats were used primarily east of the Cascades in similar ways, and Tule Mat Houses were used year round by the People of the Plateau and the Columbia River.

Kit includes: Artifact tule mat model 6"x 8" (+/-) tules prepared and cut to length for 25) 3"x 6" (+/-) mats, 25 6" plastic needles, hemp cordage and yarn cut to length, Activity sheet instructions with images, line art drawings
Tule Mat replenishment Tules, hemp cordage and yarn prepared for 25 student mats.

Kit replenishment: $40.00  (add 1.00 /student)


Cedar Bark Weaving

Outreach Flier PDF

Students will learn about the amazing inner bark of red cedar tree and how it can be used to weave baskets, hats, mats and more for daily life. Students  from third grade to high school enjoy this activity.

Students will see a sample cedar bark strip and how cedar can be split into finer strips for basketry. They will weave a small cedar bark bracelet or armband using a braided diagonal plaiting technique, then embellish with shell buttons, sinew and colored raffia.

Kit includes: Sample inner outer bark of red cedar tree showing the layers; sample thick bark to demo splitting; cedar bark strips cut and prepared for 25 bracelets or armbands; buttons; raffia and sinew cut to length; lesson plan; image of plaited cedar bark weavings.

Kit: $125.00   specify K-6, or Middle school-adult.
(add 2.50/ additional student max 10/class)

Cedar Bark replenishment

Prepared cedar bark strips, raffia,  buttons and sinew for 25 student projects, raffia, buttons, sinew.

Kit replenishment: $90.00  K-6 students
100.00 Middle school-adult


Cedar Plank Houses

Students will  discover the  construction technique used to create a removable plank wall unique to the Shedstyle plankhouses used here in the Pacific Northwest. Using a red cedar plank wall model and natural cordage students will understand that this construction technique worked perfectly to shed rain, and protect from the elements.

Optional Cattail Mat artifact can be used to show how cattail mats were used on the inside of the plank wall to capture and hold heat.

Kit includes:  Cedar planks, alder poles, cedar base and natural cordage to make a 10x12" model of a cedar house plank wall; line art pages for cedar plankhouse and construction; color drawings of plank houses.

Cedar Plankhousel Kit price: 75.00

Artifact Cattail Mat Replica: 40.00 (included in the Cattail Mat Kit)

Northwest Weaving with Wool

Outreach Flier PDF

Students learn about the art form of the Northwest Coast weaving with wool which came from Mountain Goats and a specially bred 'wool dog'. This wool was woven on a two bar loom for blankets and robes.

Using a model of two bar loom students will each make their own small model of a Salish blanket using natural wool and traditional natural colors.

Kit includes: 25) wooden two-bar loom model, Pre-cut Yarn (white, and natural colors) for 25 wool weavings; 25) plastic weaving needles; Model and Sample of Weaving project; Instructions for activity; historic color images of two bar loom and Northwest wool weavings

Kit Price:  125.00  (2.50/additional students)

Northwest Weaving replenishment Yarn replenishment for 30 wool weavings with natural color.

Replenishment: 35.00 (.75/additional students)
Natural Dyes on Wool

Students will learn about and make natural dyes used to dye wool for robes. Students will learn how to make a dye bath with 4-6 seasonal and available different natural dye materials such as red alder bark or 'cones', Oregon grape bark or berry, Osage orange wood, goldenrod and other plants  primarily from the Pacific Northwest.

After making a dye bath students will dye small skeins of yarn to be used in their Northwest Weaving Activity and/or to make their own Dyed Wool Sample Card.

Kit includes: 4-6 seasonally available raw dye materials used to make small batches of dye bath; small skeins of pre-scoured yarn enough for 25 students to use for a Dyed Wool Sample Card, or to add some of their own dyed weavers  to the Northwest Coast Wool Weaving ; Dyed Wool Sample Card with dyed wool; Templates and activity sheets.

Kit Price: 80.00 (1.00/additional students up to 10)
Pigments, Paint and Symbolism Students will make their own paint from natural rock pigments such as red and yellow ochre, and green clay. This pigment was collected throughout the Northwest and traded widely. They will use natural binders to make lasting paint.

Students will design and paint symbolism on 4x4 stone tiles (you provide, too heavy to ship!).

Kit includes: Four non-toxic natural rock pigments ground; containers to distribute in class; natural gelatin as a binder; spoons and wooden sticks to grind pigment; pigment plate; small paintbrushes; Symbolism sheets; for 25 students

Kit Price: 90.00 (1.00/additional students up to 10)

Family Activity Kits- Sorry Not Available at this Time;

New: Northwest Weaving, Natural Dyes, and Natural Pigments

A complete set of activities for two learners, geared for elementary to early middle school students with 'People of Cascadia Activities' booklet with twelve activities, with a kit full of supplies to create them.

Activities connect directly to teachings from my book "The People of Cascadia- Pacific Northwest Native American History' with recommended reading. These are culturally authentic using natural materials such as cedar bark, cattails, nettle and rock, along with child-friendly materials such as Balsafoam for carving, to teach core traditional skills.

Activities include:
Cordage Making I- Supplies: natural fiber twines to gain cordage making skills to make two types of rope or twine using the  two strand technique.
Cordage Making II-
Supplies: Natural fibers to experiment with more advanced cordage techniques.
Natural Pigments: Natural rock, pigment binder and wooden beads to create red, yellow and white paints which can be used to paint wooden beads which can be strung onto the cordage used in the Cordage activities.
Cedar Bark Bracelet/Armband- Supplies: Prepared cedar bark, fiber, button, sinew, colored raffia to make a diagonal plaited bracelet using a simple version of traditional diagonal plaiting.
Cattail Mats- Supplies: Prepared cattail leaf, fiber cordage, 6" needle, fiber twine to sew a traditional Northwest style mat used for summer shelters, mattresses, wall insulation, seating and more.
Summer Shelter Diorama- Supplies: Clay, plate, wire to use with cattail mat to create a summer camp scene.
Slate Knife/ Spear: Hardwood handle, partially processed slate stone, sinew to create a small primitive knife or model of a spear.
Carving I :  Balsafoam precut carving blocks (designed for use by children to 'carve' using safe wooden tools), wooden carving knives, transfer paper, symbolism artwork for transfer
Totem Pole Design:  Master sheet of traditional Northwest Coast design elements to use to create your own totem pole 'story' using symbolism.
Northwest Coast Weaving: Wooden loom, fiber cordage and wool to weave a traditional style weaving replicating the wool robes or tumplines (basket straps) of the Northwest.
Natural Dyes:  Extra wool and prepared dye material to create your own naturally dyed yellow and orange yarn, and learn about other native plants you can use.
Plant Pressings: Create your own herbarium press for your travels while exploring native plants. Use these pressing to help identify plants and to create art projects from pressings.

Activity Kit with book: $125


Additional set of activities (at time of order only)
per person: $40


These kits are currently not available through retail stores.