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English Language Arts Grade 5
Reading: Literature Standard 9
English Language Arts Grade 4
Reading: Literature Standard 9
3 class periods of 30 minutes each
Students will define what a myth is and features associated with it. They will identify the myth with one of the seven constellations they read about. The student will write an imaginary myth, based in students' modern culture of today.
When it is over ask students the following questions:
Have the music playing quietly as you complete the rest of the Day 1 lesson.
Greek and Native American Indian myths will be used to explain why constellations exist and what they mean. Relate constellations to Greek Myth and Nine Mile Canyon petroglyphs to Native American Indian explanations.
Mention comparisons and contrasts of these two cultures and of the natural world to each. Also, bring to students' attention the wealth of Native American Indian culture in their local areas.
Riddle 1: There are two people who look at each other all the time. Who are they?
Answer: The sky and the earth
Riddle 2: There is a blue bowl filled with popcorn. What is it?
Answer: The sky with its stars.
Show and identify the seven winter constellations (pdf) during the months of December-March with transparency on overhead projector and briefly describe its placement in the winter sky with respect to cardinal directions (east, west, north, south).
Material culture traits include-objects such as clothes, buildings, artworks, machines. Written language is "material" culture trait.
Nonmaterial culture trait-practices and beliefs such as customs, ceremonies, spoken language, religion. Forms of greeting, shaking hands, hugging, bowing. Nonmaterial culture traits can be expressed through material culture. Paintings or literature made by people of a cultural group show groups' ideas of beauty. Spoken language is "nonmaterial".
Traits define a culture/society. When societies interact, they take culture traits from one another and use them as their own. This is cultural borrowing. This can be seen in clothing, music and sports (baseball, games).
Offer some suggestions to be included in the writing:
Students can work in pairs to complete the flip-chart foldable. The transparency of constellations can be left on for students to refer to as they create their flip-chart of constellations.
After students choose the constellation they want to write about, students can be grouped by who is working on a particular constellation and help each other discuss and write about their culture and apply it into a new imaginary myth.
Teacher can supply materials if students do not have basics such as markers, colored pencils, or crayons for illustrations.
If you are not near Price, Utah where Nine Mile Canyon is located, you can visit the In the Canyon Web site additional photos http://www.ninemilecanyoncoalition.org/old/pictures.htm
Perhaps you can take a field trip to the College of Eastern Utah Prehistoric Museum in Price, Utah, to view Native American Indian artifacts.
Museums near you may have the same thing, i.e. Green River, The Wesley Powell Museum or The Edge of the Cedars in Blanding, Utah, and also San Rafael in Emery County.
Encourage families to view the Winter constellations during the months of December-March with a spotting scope, binoculars, or telescope.
Students will hand in their imaginative myth and teacher will assign points to it based on the rubric below.
Lesson Plan adapted from Kathy Milburn, Carbon School District.
Bierhorst, John. Lightning Inside You: And Other Native American Riddles ISBN: 0590381954
Story telling flannel board, along with flannel die cuts to represent poem during storytelling (constellation illustrations can be enlarged and traced to create the flannel die cut pieces to use). Other pieces can be created such as an Indian princess, a burlap type bag, golden stars to surround the constellations...use one's own imagination for creating additional flannel pieces to compliment the story.
Nakai, Carlos R., Canyon Trilogy: Native American Flute Music (Taped Native American Indian music)
Pueblo tale titled, "The Scattered Stars."