Thursday, 5 December 2013

We Decorate Our World #8 - Coast Salish Masks

Coast Salish Frog Spirit Mask
Coast Salish Shark Mask

On Tuesday, the Water Group and Wind Group partnered together to learn about a Coast Salish community that lives very close to us, the Musqueam. We learned that the Coast Salish and other First Nations use masks to tell stories during potlatches and the winter ceremonial dances. The masks may depict animals, humans or mythical beings and they are usually carved from a light wood so they are not too heavy to dance in.
preparing the paper for paper mache
First Nation connection

For the activity, the two groups made masks of their own using paper mache. As we waited for the paper mache to dry, the children looked through different Northwest Coast First Nation designs to put on their mask.

We Decorate Our World #7 - Face and Body Decorations

This week the Water group began exploring face and body decorations used by cultures around the world. On Monday, I showed the children pictures of people from various cultures with face or body decorations. As the children looked at the pictures, I noticed that the they would giggle and laugh because the people in the pictures looked funny to them. So I explained to the children that the designs on the people from each picture have special meanings and we should show our respect by being caring with our words and actions. After reflection, we were able to express our opinions in a way to show how we have become more knowledgeable of others by showing respect and appreciation with our words. After looking through the pictures, the children eagerly awaited to paint their faces.