While story time was going on, most of the moms waited out in the hall. The third graders had displays out on tables in the hallways and this caused a bit of conversation. Apparently all third graders are assigned a Native American tribe. Then they have to re-create the home of that tribe. And when I write "they" I mean the PARENTS. As in, I will have to do this in two years. Look at these things:
Those are Q-TIPS as corn stalks!! And after talking to the aunt of the student who did this I found out the girl thought of that on her own. Then she told me that the dad actually made his own clay for the Native American home. He actually harvested clay from his backyard. She said it took about two weeks to get it right. Did you read that?!?! Two weeks to make CLAY. This is something that can be purchased in two minutes.
Moving on to the next village-a bark home complete with stream and Native American figurines. Another mom gave me a heads up to head to Michael's early for the figurines. They sell out quickly since all the third graders need them. One unlucky mother said that she had to resort to using Hispanic figurines since Michael's ran out of the Native American's. She said this as if it was a complete failure on her part. I tried to encourage her, letting her know that they really are so small it's hard to tell the difference. But she was not to be comforted.
This is another one made from birch tree bark. I hope Lily understands that she has more creativity in her left ear then I have in my entire body. I'm already thinking ahead and I'm pretty sure her Native American village is going to be made out of Lego's.
Surprisingly, most of the moms said that their kids were really into the project and all they had to do was guide them and help assemble the projects. Two of the moms were on their second child in the third grade and they said that the teacher keeps track of which families get what tribes so that they can't re-use a model. Ugh. That was my other plan but I'm foiled again. So I took these pictures to remind myself of what needs to be done. Maybe Lily will fail second grade and I'll have an extra year to prepare myself. Cross your fingers!
My assignment was to man the fishing stop for the Native Americans (**note** all day we called them Indians because back in the 1600's, they were called Indians. It was less of a mouthful than Native Americans, anyway.) and Pilgrims. Here is Lily's group. Hers was one of the calmer groups. Some of the others were a little crazy with their magnetic fishing rods. It was quite challenging to get the fishing lines untangled while the kids continued to pull on them. They really wanted to fish.
Lily with her friend Sophia. They are in small groups together during the school day as well so they are pretty close.
First grade boy Native Americans.
Lily pointed out her turkey to me. She's thankful for flowers, mom, teachers, friends, earth, grandparents, and brothers. Where did "earth" come from? Since when is she thankful for the earth?! This is a girl who draws through a ream of paper a week. And when I suggest that she color on the other side as well I am given the "are you for real mom?" look. And then I looked at all the other turkeys and most of them had earth listed as well. Obviously they were all moved by something and felt the need to be thankful for the earth.
The Thanksgiving feast consisted of sugar cookies in pumpkin shape, turkey sandwiches, goldfish crackers, Swedish fish candies, corn muffins, a popcorn ball, and a rice krispie treat turkey with candy corn feathers. It can't get more accurate than that. Take a visit to Plymouth, MA and they will tell you that this is the exact meal that the Pilgrims and Indians ate back in 1621.
Luckily, these Pilgrims and the Native Americans have remained friends. Lily has already told me she wants her hair in braids for next year when she is a Native American. I didn't bring up the Native American villages yet and I'm hoping she doesn't notice them. She would want to get started immediately.