|4th grader burning a bowl into a birch log|
|Testing out the Christmas tree bed in the wigwam|
|Using the bow drill with a partner eases the stress on your arm.|
|Taking turns blowing the coal|
Food was the topic of our third and fourth stations. Unlike the first 3 elements in the order, we can survive weeks without food. Eventually though, we do need to eat. One of the foods that the Abenaki relied upon were ducks, and to lure them in, they would weave and tie decoys out of cattails. So, armed with only a few pictures to serve as an example and a pile of cattail leaves, students attempted to make their own decoys. Not only did our decoys look like ducks, but they also floated when we dropped them into the North Branch River on our way back to school. At our final station, we honed our skills with a throwing stick so that if our decoys worked, we would possess the accuracy to successfully harvest our food.
These are ancient skills that are no longer necessary in our everyday lives. However, we are inexplicably drawn to them, emboldened by the deep heartstrings they strike. To better understand and appreciate who we are, it is important to understand how we got here. Then maybe we can better choose where we are going. This is why we study history. Studying it outside during ECO takes the lesson out of the history book and puts it directly into the hands of the student.
|Piling snow for a quinzee|