Early Childhood Education

The Early  Childhood Education program offers services to help promote early literacy, family strengthening, school readiness, and quality education for children birth through Pre-K. There are many exciting events for children and families throughout the year! Children are required to have an Educational Release on file to participate. If you have any questions about Early Childhood Education programs and events contact Autumn Laraway, early childhood educational associate, at autumn.laraway@pokagonband-nsn.gov or (269) 462-4327.


The Early Childhood Education program offers workshops named Gwikwé'amen. The verb "gwikwé'amen" talks about us wrapping a child in a blanket as a symbol of love and devotion. This comes from our hearts and the desire to take care of each other. It is our job to look out for one another, especially our children.

Holly Fair & Art Extravaganza
Saturday, Dec. 7

Early Childhood Education Events

Harvest Day
Saturday, Oct. 5

Spring Into Your Local Library (registration coming soon)

Baby Celebration (registration coming soon)

Honoring Our Parents Shishibé (registration coming soon)

Débénwéthêk Parent Group
In Potawatomi, Débénwéthêk means the ones who take care of others. The goal of Débénwéthêk Parent Group is to develop opportunities for Pokagon families to spend quality time with one another and create meaningful experiences together.

Débénwéthêk Parent Group is composed of parents and caregivers of children under 8 years of age and meets every third Tuesday of the month at 5:30 p.m. at Zagbëgon. Childcare is provided. For more information, please contact Margaret Long at margaret.long@pokagonband-nsn.gov.

Neshnabé mbokén
First Wednesday of each month
4:30 p.m.–5:30 p.m.
Zagbëgon: An Early Learning & Development Academy

Neshnabé mbokén is a children's book club, which will have a focus on Native American books & authors. This program is open to the public and welcomes all ages to attend. For more information, please contact Erin Byrket-Burggraf at topash240512@gmail.com.

PALS (Play and Learn Social)
Join other parents and children ages 0–8 for an opportunity to engage with one another in play and learning activities every first and third Thursday of the month from 9:30 a.m. until 11:00 a.m. Location varies, but the group generally meets in the PHS Multi-Purpose Room. For more information, please contact Rachel Orvis at drorvis@gmail.com.

Practice the "Bozho Song" with your child(ren) at home! Just play the video below.

Bozho Song from Pokagon Band on Vimeo.

*These gatherings will be cancelled due to extreme weather in accordance with Dowagiac Schools, if they issue a delay or if they cancel school altogether.