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Database Provider


Anna King


6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 10th


Science, Social Studies, Biology, English Language Arts

Resource Types

  • Podcast, 3 minutes, 42 seconds
  • Article

Regional Focus

North America, United States, USA - West, Oregon, Eastern Oregon

Climate Change Is Making a Springtime Tradition for the Umatilla Tribes Hard to Uphold

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  • This article and linked podcast is about the Umatilla springtime tradition of gathering wild celery, the importance of this tradition, and why climate change is making it harder for the tribes to uphold the tradition.
  • Students will hear from tribe members about the ritual and how they believe wild celery plants are connected to their ancestors and loved ones.
Teaching Tips


  • This brief story allows students to hear about how climate change is affecting Native American traditions.
  • This podcast is concise and easy to understand.

Additional Prerequisites

  • Students should understand that climate change may lead to drier conditions and major shifts in seasonal patterns.
  • A commercial may play before the podcast begins.


  • For a middle school language arts course, students could interpret the information in this resource alongside other forms of media that deal with similar themes.
  • For a high school language arts course, this podcast and article allows students to evaluate a speaker's point of view, reasoning, and tone.
  • Students could use this podcast to evaluate the political and economic decisions that have lead to climate change, and how this change has influenced the cultural and environmental characteristics of various places and regions.
  • This article could be used to connect to lessons about differing cultural traditions, food insecurity, or the importance of nature to various groups of people.
Scientist Notes
This resource from NPR follows a group of women and girls from the Umatilla Tribes of Oregon as they follow their spring tradition of gathering wild celery. The deep meaning of this custom is explored, as it binds the Umatilla community with their ancestors, many of whom were victims of the COVID pandemic. The effects of climate change on the celery harvest are highlighted, as it has led to less predictable and shorter wild celery seasons. This resource is a case study of how climate change is changing people's lives and interfering with age-old traditions, something that is sure to worsen in the coming decades as the climate continues to warm. This resource is recommended for teaching.
  • Common Core English Language Arts Standards (CCSS.ELA)
    • Reading: History/Social Studies (6-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.5 Describe how a text presents information (e.g., sequentially, comparatively, causally).
    • Speaking & Listening (K-12)
      • CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.SL.6.2 Interpret information presented in diverse media and formats (e.g., visually, quantitatively, orally) and explain how it contributes to a topic, text, or issue under study.
  • Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS)
    • ESS3: Earth and Human Activity
      • HS-ESS3-1 Construct an explanation based on evidence for how the availability of natural resources, occurrence of natural hazards, and changes in climate have influenced human activity.
  • College, Career, and Civic Life (C3) Standards
    • Dimension 2: Geography
      • D2.Geo.5.9-12 Evaluate how political and economic decisions throughout time have influenced cultural and environmental characteristics of various places and regions.
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