Students finished off their outlines and began writing the rough copies of their creation story. We talked lots about working with their partner to come up with all ideas together and that I should be able to see each person's writing in the journal so all group members are contributing. Students were taught ow to use quotation marks in case they wanted to add dialogue to their stories, which they all did! we discussed the difference between writing a story and writing a script and that stories still need lots of description and detail of what is happening. Some groups also typed up their stories on the computer and began working on the final part of this project.
As we know, Aboriginal people did not use a traditional written language but instead transmitted knowledge orally. They also used pictographs and symbols that were written on stone like seen in Writing On Stone Provincial Park, and on buffalo hides called story robes. We looked at a sort robe in the Glenbow Archives called "Warriors: A Journey Through Five Centuries," to show how pictures can be used to tell a story. Students will be creating their own story robe to tell their story once they have finished the typing portion.
Below are 4 examples of student story robes from previous years.
Over the next several weeks, students will be creating their own creation story based off Aboriginal oral traditions. We had a big literacy focus this week! We listened to three creation stories this week: How the Turtle Got its Shell, How the Fox Got Crossed Legs and How the Loon Got Its Necklace which demonstrated what a creation story is. Students also completed a reading comprehension entitled "Mistakes of Old Man" that was also an example of a creation story. We listened and read a few other Aboriginal stories and continued to talk about Aboriginal culture and traditions. Next week is only a 3 day week due to Teacher's Convention, but students will continue to work on their stories.
Due to so many students being away on Thursday because of the huge amount of snow we got, we combined 4B and 4D and worked together as a class on some snow related activities. We learned about Wilson Bentley, whose birthday was today in 1865, who devoted his life to photographing single snowflakes. We learned about his life and then students made their own snowflakes out of coffee filters. They also did a snow themed math problem and a science design challenge.
On Friday, the whole school participated in a design challenge. Each grade had their own unique challenge created by that grade's teachers, but all students in the grade did the same challenge. The Grade 4 challenge was to create a device to move a person who broke their leg, in a hot air balloon accident, 2km down a mountain. They were given a variety of materials to create a device. Using their science knowledge of wheels and axles, many were able to come up with something that would successfully transport a person to safety!
Last week students had six periods to work on researching 6 Aboriginal tribes found in Alberta. These tribes were the: Blackfoot, Cree, Dene Suline, Dunne za, Tsuu T'ina and Nakoda. This week we talked about symbols and what the purpose of a symbol is. Students were then asked to create a symbol they thought represented each group based on their research. They needed to provide an explanation of what symbol they made and why they chose it. Making a two page spread in their creative journals, they drew and coloured everything and included all facts they had found. Students will receive their rubrics early next week for this assignment.
We also started a new read aloud on Monday called: A Wrinkle In Time by Madeleine L'Engle. On Friday, we created a web of all the things we know thus far about the main character Meg Murray and each student drew a picture of what they think she looks like in their creative journal.