Grade: Senior

#1284. Intro. to Native American Unit

Reading/Writing, level: Senior
Posted Wed Sep 1 18:13:19 PDT 1999 by brian kulak (
Audubon High School, Audubon, NJ
Activity Time: five-ten minutes
Concepts Taught: speaking, listening

i hope nobody has used this, if so, i am sorry!

anyway, in an effort to get kids to understand the oral tradition of the native american experience i played a game of whisper-down-the-line. it is not exactly the most original game under the sun but here is how it works.

choose a phrase or sentence and tell kids that you will say it once to the first person, they may say it once to the following person, and so on. at the end of the line, the final student reports his/her rendtion of what was said. it invariably is completely foreign.

the idea is to get kids to understand that what they are reading is translation and not the original story. just like the phrase changed so did the story and it shoud be treated as such. kids love the game and seem to better understand the importance of oral tradition.

by the way. the phrase i used was: the brown cow grazes in the green meadow when the clock strikes three on tuesday.

you get the idea. good luck and let me know how it went.