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An In School Field Trip

Students discovering Native American traditions.

The 5th grade was very excited to spend part of Tuesday, September 20th having a special "in school" field trip. We used the company “The World in Our Backyard”. This group brings materials into the school and does a special presentation which is directed toward specific grade level needs.

The World in Our Backyard has worked with our 5th graders for 3 years now and once again we were so engaged that the time flew by! The students are presented with an overview of the different types of Native American tribes across the United States.

The company provides pictures, wonderful models of the homes, and even costumes for the student activities. The students dressed up in the different clothing the tribes wore across the country. They discussed the different natural resources that which were found. Through their discussions they also realized the depending on the type of natural resources available determined what type of home they built.

They also discussed how climate affected clothing. If the climate was warm, a thinner material was used; a cooler climate the material was thicker. We learned many of our weaving and dying techniques from Native Americans. Decorations on clothing were considered an art form and showed great skill. Often "beads" were created from porcupine quills.

The students got to participate in a drumming ceremony and a "naming" ceremony. The American Indian names were based upon personality or special ability. One fascinating fact we learned was the lullaby of "Rock-a-bye-baby" was actually created by early explorers to describe how Native Americans would use "cradle boards" and hang them in trees while they worked outside in the fields or near fires!

We would like to thank the “World in Our Back Yard” for the wonderful presentation. They do wonderful in-house field trips and support world cultural programs for 1st thru 5th grade. It supports the NC Course of Study Competency Goals and Objectives.

Written by: Becka Lorenz, 5th Grade Teacher
Posted: Sep 23, 2011 by Robin Pettit

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