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Morning reflection

I must say I have enjoyed the class and learning about the various American Native cultures. The Pemmican we ate was wonderful and quite possibly could be used as a trail mix. I am going to try and make my own type of Pemmican this week. I have never done activities that have asked me to look at pictures and first discussed the facts while not making assumptions. Thus a very challenging but educational activity. I can't wait to see what dances we will try try on the next few days as well.

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  • I really enjoyed the "numbers" mixer game we played this morning. I am terrified of free-form dancing around other adults, but Elizabeth made it very non-threatening by providing parameters and structure. It would even be a fun mixer activity for high schoolers. I enjoyed the Pemmiken. I think bringing snacks from various eras is such a fun idea. This work even work in a high school orchestra class. I used to teach a 7:30 a.m. orchestra at West High.....bringing snacks from the various musical eras would have been a great way to wake everyone up!
  • I enjoyed all of the morning activities!   The magazine activity was a good reminder to be careful in the classroom not to share our own bias (and prejudice?).  I was in the partnership that looked at "Men's Health" and realized after the discussion that the men in the magazine were portrayed as independent types, no women, children, families or even friends needed for happiness/success.

    I was surprised at the challenge of not making assumptions as we looked at the photographs of Native Americans; it is truly difficult to leave assumptions out of the information seeking process.

    The Yakima Dance - fun!

  • I really enjoyed the media bias lesson. Very engaging and thought provoking. This is an easy lesson that I can use in any of my high school classes. This can be enlightening for students to see just what is being pushed by the media. It's easy to see the bias on some magazines but it's harder for others. Sitting down and really looking at the articles, photos and ads was an eye opener.
  • I enjoyed the icebreakers this morning, I feel my class group & I share a lot of similar interests. I am teaching a class next week with students ages 12-15 & will adapt this activity to use with my group.

    The dancing was great fun! The first  dance a Native Indian one, called The Yakima Welcome Dance, from the Tlingit Indians, had very good rhythm. Upon hearing the music, I was reminded of a human heartbeat. Earlier in my career, I had taught out in the "bush"for 19 years. During that time I learned many Athabaskan & Eskimo dances. Most are composed to commemorate a significant event in the lives of the people. I really enjoy the drumming. (An interesting sidenote, my father was a drummer in many bands, a lot of them country.)

    I also enjoyed Primary Source activity, it was very thought provoking.

    All in all great activities!!!

  • This morning was very applicable to my lessons next year as I start out with American Indian cultures.  I definitely plan to make and share the Pemmican with my students.  Giving students an opportunity to experience history through their senses is such a powerful teaching tool so I'm excited about what I'm learning in this class.

    I also plan to use the observation technique as it really lay out for students the difference between making a factual observation and using pre knowledge to form conclusions.  These are skills we teach in reading. but this method makes it easy to understand and highly accessible for students.  This is a great segue into the difference between observable fact, conjecture and opinion.

  • Tanka Bars! http://www.tankabar.com/cgi-bin/nanf/public/main.cvw

    There's a commercial version of the pemmican we ate in class. I think you can get it at REI. 

    The task with the pictures is something that I will most certainly do with my classes. I especially like extending it to further aspects of an historical study (food, housing, art, etc.). It could be done over several days with the different sources, then finally students will have to match the different sources to their specific cultures. I agree with Jake that it's very difficult to discuss just the facts without making any assumptions.

    The intro activity was a good reminder of how easy it is to get a slanted view of history when viewing limited source material. I'd like to do this with my classes, but it may be challenging to find materials to fit with 5th graders.

    Tanka Bar :: Real Food :: Real People
  • I think that the opening activity of looking through the magazines was a good reminder of bias in media, and as an extension, a reminder that bias is in everything we teach our students, whether we recognize it or not. I think there are lots of good lessons to teach students through an activity like that, provided it is structured carefully and thoughtfully.

    I thought that the challenge of observing the pictures of the Native Americans without making assumptions is also avaluable skill to teach to our students. It is important to remind the students to only state things that are facts - things that are true about the picture.

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