Chapter 4: Families—The Importance of Relatives § 71
Fancy Pencils—Fancy pencils often inspire children to write.
Dance-theme pencils can be easily made by adhering dance-
shoe stickers to sparkly pencils.
Blank Books—Blank books shaped like moc-
casins or ballet shoes encourage children to
copy word cards, experiment with writing, or
dictate dance stories. Moccasin books can be
made with brown construction paper for the
front and back covers and several pieces of
inexpensive white paper inside. Ballet-shoe books might have
colored paper on the front and back and white paper inside.
It would be wonderful for classes to attend a real powwow, with music,
dancing, food, art works, storytelling, and interesting people. Check around
your area to see if any are scheduled. If attending a powwow is not possible,
teachers may consider showing clips from a powwow videotape recording,
such as Into the Circle. (Individuals who wish to videotape a powwow should
be aware that certain dances or ceremonial portions of powwows may not be
photographed or videotaped. The announcer will usually inform the public
when cameras are not allowed.) A powwow dancing video segment might
be introduced along with other video clips showing various types of dancing
from around the world, with perhaps one type viewed briefly and discussed
each day. Since young children would typically rather be moving around than
watching others dance, viewing time should be limited, perhaps to between
five and ten minutes.
Even such a short viewing can have a dramatic effect on children’s atti-
tudes. For example, Sally selected one section of the video to show her
preschool class. After reviewing the entire tape recording, she chose a portion
that highlighted a young fancy dancer because it contained lots of activity,
color, and excitement. When the children first saw the dancer on the televi-
sion screen, several remarked that they didn’t like him.
“I think he’s bad,” declared a young girl.
“Let’s listen to what he says,” Sally replied.