We had lots going on in Humanities this week! Students were studying for their People of Alberta quiz on Wednesday. I hope to have them marked so I can hand them back at Parent Teacher Interviews, but we will see! On Wednesday, students also needed to hand in their creative journals so I could mark their creature assignment based off the First Mosquito story we read.
Earlier in the week, students were working on the art portion of their personal values assignment that we began last week. They are creating their own "value wheel" to represent the things most important in their life. Using pointillism, they are creating unique symbols to represent their values. After Spring Break, students will finish their value wheels and type up their writing!
We continued to discuss the culture of the Métis people this week. On Monday, we read 2 books that had information on their language, history, food, shelter, clothing and art. We also learned about the very important Métis sash that was used for many different purposes like a rope, to hold first aid items, a wash cloth and belt. The sash is a predominate symbol of Métis culture. On Tuesday, we learned about Louis Riel, a Métis Canadian hero who sacrificed his life for equal rights for the Métis people. We also looked at how Canada's provinces have changed since 1867, listened to a song in Michif (the Métis language) and watched a red river jig,
On Wednesday we read the Métis version of "The Giving Tree." This is a story about Métis values and an old tree with a large hollow in it. Families would stop at the tree when traveling between villages and if they needed anything, they could look in the tree to see if it was there. If you took something from the tree, you always had to offer something back. This story highlighted the Métis values of honesty, kindness, love and sharing. We went on to learn about many other values the Metis highly regard in their daily lives including tolerance, Mother Earth, patience, strength, courage and the most important and center of their values is The Creator.
Students started working on a written piece about their values. Their writing should be in complete sentences, paragraph format and must answer all of the following questions:
- What is a value? What is a value wheel?
- What values are important to you (choose a minimum of 4). Explain each value.
- How do you show/demonstrate each value in your life (give specific examples of what you do)
- What do the Métis value? Explain.
- How are your values similar and different from the Metis values?(Explain, don't just list)
- Why do we teach values?
- What would happen if no one valued anything?
Students worked on this writing on Wednesday and Thursday and the rough copy is due Monday. On Monday, students will begin creating their own art piece of a value wheel.
All students received a study guide on Tuesday for their People of Alberta quiz that will be Wednesday, March 21. There is no school on Thursday, March 22 or Friday, March 23 due to Parent Teacher Interviews.
On Monday and Tuesday, students learned about the voyageurs. The voyageurs were an important group of French men who made relations with the First Nations and explored Canadian river systems while assisting in the fur trade. Students learned how hard life as a voyageur was from watching a video produced by The National Film Board of Canada. We also looked at an educational website created by The Hudson's Bay Company who employed many voyageurs during the fur trade. We discussed many different aspects of voyageur life including their diet, clothing, job description and physical requirements. Students then wrote a diary entry as if they were a voyageur, signed at the bottom with a male, French name!
Over the next couple of days, students will be working on a creative writing assignment that builds on their story writing from the past few weeks. We will be reading a book called "The First Mosquito" and students will create a creature inspired by the types in the book. They will write a brief description of the creature, its powers and include a short story about it. They will draw out their creature using the style of the artist in the book. The illustrations are based off the art and legends of the First Nations groups in the Pacific Northwest. Once students have completed these elements in their journal, they will make a good copy of their creature in their visual journals.
All week students worked on finishing off their creation stories. Groups were working on varying parts throughout the week. Many groups had trouble managing their time and work and had to rush to complete their assignment. Students had many components and check-ins for this project including: a story outline, a rough copy, a typed up and printed out good copy of their story, a rough copy of the symbols/pictures they would be using and finally a completed story robe with the images outlined in colour! On Friday, Grade 4's shared their story robes and stories with the Grade 8 class that shared their Aztec stories with us last week!