Sunday, September 25, 2011

Wrapping Up Jamestown

What a busy day today. The boys had bible quiz, we all had church, then Awanas tonight and we threw in some school this afternoon. After taking a 45 minute hiatus from life, I went upstairs with newspaper, pretend feathers and face paint. We made Indian headdresses as well as adorned them with symbolic paint of their choosing. Jayden was "Raccoon Claw" and Austen was "Mewolf". I have these three bamboo sticks that I purchased at Target awhile ago and just have not gotten around to buying a large decorative vase to put them in so we used them as a tepee today. Yes, we know that the Indians in Jamestown did NOT live in tepees but limited means means creative solutions.

The boys really enjoyed getting into character and we traded beads back and forth. I pretended to be the settlers from Jamestown and their yellow beads symbolized the gold. I kept trying to cheat them out and trade my blue beads for four of their gold beads- because, as we learned, gold had no intrinsic value to the Indians. We discussed was this kind or honorable of the settlers and how would we feel if someone tried to take advantage of us.

Next, we played uno, in a circle, and if I won I was able to keep all of their yellow beads. I won twice. Finally, we read a couple of books on John Smith and talked about Pocahontas and her role in saving John Smith's life and the good relations between the Indians and the settlers as long as Smith was around. I feel so sad knowing that the Indians were so giving and wanting, for the most part, good relations with the settlers ....and yet, so many were greedy, selfish and had no respect for the Indian's way of life.

A few days ago, we were able to watch a live blacksmith demonstration and explanation on how to forge metal into useful objects, ie: tools and weapons. Jayden practiced forging metal into a knife. Austen had a chance to do it but completely froze up and made his hands go limp the minute I tried to put the protective gloves on him. Then, a spark few past him and , infront of everyone, he started screaming. Quite a memorable moment. Then, later that same day, Jay was able to participate in an archery class. Both of these were very cool as we were learning about Indians and how they hunted with arrows, the findings of arrowheads in Jamestown and then lastly, the blacksmiths within Jamestown and the important role that they played in creating tools and weapons for the settlers. Love how God ties in our lessons to practical applications- always!

Finally, tomorrow we are beginning our three week study on the Pilgrims in Plymouth but we should be receiving a great package of resources from the park ranger at Jamestown in Virginia. Wow, I was so excited to call and talk to the ranger there. He was so helpful and so willing to help with our study. We will definitely come back to Jamestown and do some more activities once our package arrives. I also ordered some travel brochures from Plymouth to be delivered this week as well. The best I can do since we live so far from both locations....also, the park ranger is sending us two Virginia post cards. Yeah!!!

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