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Showing posts from November, 2011

Walk to Musqueam

We were lucky today was such a beautiful day for our walk to Musqueam to view decorations created by two Musqueam members. At the entrance of the reserve (Crown St. and Stautlo Ave.), Debra Sparrow has designed a modern day Coast Salish monument of The Runner. The Runner was the person who kept watch for the Nation and would run through the village alerting the community of people approaching their territory. A plaque placed at the feet of The Runner  states "The spirit of our ancestors moves through the open spaces of our runner. He carries the knowledge and history of our people....he whispers to them...generation to generation."  This monument is another example of how people use decorations to tell stories.


Next we looked at a house post carved by Dave Louis Jr. The Coast Salish people do not carve totem poles but rather house posts that traditionally would adorn the interior entrance ways of the each respective family long house.  The house posts would commemorate an eve…

Totem Tales

Totem poles are not only decorations but also tell stories.  Today, we read "Totem Tales" an Alaskan story by Deb Vanasse.  It is the story of a totem pole that comes to life.  The totem figures: Grizzly, Beaver, Frog, Wolf and Eagle have to reassemble themselves in proper order before daybreak.  After reading the story, we used puppets to reenact the story.  I am sure your child would love to share the story with you.



The children are still using dough to make decorations.  Some children chose to make more decorations while others chose to paint those already made.  As soon as they are dry and painted, the decorations will be sent home.


Next week (weather permitting), we will walk to Musqueam to view two Coast Salish house posts that were erected during the 2010 Olympics.

Decorations Tell Stories

Kai chose to share with us a plaque from his Trindadian heritage.  The plaque had a steel drum replica and a description of the drum's importance to the people of Trinidad.

This plaque inspired us to make decorative plaques representing the heritage of each of us.   Each child was given his/her picture and flags of the countries his/her family originates from to decorate with.   Many added drawn pictures of other family members as well.  When they were finished, many of the children went around the room showing their plaques to others.  It was amazing to see the pride the children had in their work and the willingness to share with others.

November 16, 2011

Today I shared my prairie heritage with the children.  My maternal and paternal grandparents came from different parts of Europe and settled on the prairies in the early 1900's.  I chose to share a wheat ornament made of glass.  This ornament was given to me by my parents so I will always remember my prairie roots and my family that is still there.  (I really wanted to share the Saskatchewan Riders' logo)

Lots of giggles erupted when I told the children I was from Saskatchewan.  There was even more laughter as the children all tried to say Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. We read the book "If you're not from the prairie...." by David Bouchard.  I shared my stories of growing up in Saskatchewan, the land of endless sky and very cold winters.I asked the children to make a decoration of their choice using dough as the medium.    When the decorations dry, they will be painted and brought home to share.

Korean Decorations

Yu Ha shared with us a fan and a drum decoration from her Korean culture. 


Painted on the drum was the Sam-Taegeuk symbol which is found on many Korean items.  The symbol is comprised of three colours: red representing earth, yellow representing humanity and the blue representing the heavens.  Using these three colours, the children painted a decoration on a fan.













To see how the Korean fan is used as a decoration and an instrument of art, we watched a Korean fan dance. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QIBvmK9SmxI&feature=related) This dance inspired the children to create their own fan dance.

The children were proud of their fans and were excited to bring them home to share.  Adyson asked to hang her fan at the daycare because she wanted to share her decoration with everyone.


This unit of inquiry is not only fun but also a wonderful opportunity for us to share who we are and learn more about each other.