September 27, 2012

Native Americans Day 5: Southwest: Pueblo

Southwest: Pueblo
1. Review: We learned about the Apache tribe in the Southwest region last time. Today we will learn about another tribe in the Southwest, the Pueblo tribe. Remind students where the Southwest region is on the regional map.
2. Map Skills: Compare the regional map to the globe or map today and see what countries or states are in the Southwest region.
3. Discuss: Fill out the Tribes Chart after reading each section. Have the child listen closely to choose what word to put on the chart. Bold type words are good suggestions.
  • Habitat: The Pueblos lived in villages near rivers in the Southwest. This area covers what is now Utah and Colorado through Arizona and New Mexico into parts of Texas and California. The land varies between steep-walled canyons, plateaus, and sandy deserts. Rain is uncommon except during the rainy season which lasts about six weeks during the summer.
  • Homes: In their early history the Pueblos slept in natural caves and on cliffs. About the year 700 they began to build homes out of sand and adobe next to rivers. The homes, called pueblos, were also built on mesas, cliffs, and in canyons. The village was built around the kiva. The kiva was a round building with steps going up to the roof entrance. The men met in the kiva to discuss problems and to worship. The houses were owned by the women. Logs from long trees were used to support the roof. The outer walls were built first. Poles were then placed on top of the outer walls. Next willow branches were piled on the beams that supported the roof. A layer of grass and weeds followed then a layer of earth. Houses shared walls and were often stacked on top of each other. One’s porch was often the roof of the house below. Ovens were built on roofs. Doors and windows were small to keep out the heat. The Pueblos entered their homes by ladders through the roof. The ladders could be moved if enemies attacked.
  • Dress: The Pueblo men dressed in kilts of cotton. They wore ankle-high moccasins. Around their waists were branded cotton sashes. Rabbit-fur and turkey-feather robes were also wore. The women wore cotton or wool dresses with one shoulder free. They dressed in embroidered cotton or wool shawls and sashes. For warmth the women used wool robes and high moccasins boots.
  • Food: The Pueblos were mostly vegetarians, but they would eat meat when it was available. They hunted for small game such as rabbit, gopher, and squirrel. They also hunted large game such as deer, antelope, and mountain lions. They were farmers too. The main crop the Pueblo raised was corn. Corn consisted of eighty percent of their diet. Each community had a sun watcher to let everyone in the village know when to plant seeds and harvest the crops. To get water to their crops the Pueblo would sometimes go to the top of a snowy hill and roll a giant snowball to the village. They also used an irrigation system. The Pueblo shared fields in which they grew corn and squash, but they also grew individual family gardens. In the individual gardens, they raised other vegetables such as peppers, onions, chilies, and tobacco.
4. Read: The Pueblos by Alice K. Flanagan
5. Comprehension questions:
  • What region did the Pueblo live in? Southwest
  • What kind of homes did the Pueblo build? Pueblos
  • What kind of clothes did the Pueblo wear? Kilts, high moccasins, sashes, robes and dresses
  • How did the Pueblo get their food? Hunted and farmed
Coil Pots
We used the activity on page 32 of Native Americans A Complete Thematic Unit by Jill Norris to make our coil pots.  We made our own clay by mixing 1 cup cornstarch, 2 cups baking soda, and 1 1/4 cups water in a pan.  Then we cooked it over medium heat, stirring it constantly until it formed clay.  We spread the clay onto a smooth surface and kneaded it until it was smooth.  Be sure to cover it with a damp towel until it cools.
Then we used the coil method to create our pot.  First we rolled out a flat slab of clay for the base of the pot.
Then we rolled long ropes of clay with the palm of our hands and spiraled the ropes around and around the base.  Smooth the surface of each row with a wet finger.  Then we let the pot air dry for a day.

Pueblo Geometry
The Native Americans used geometric patterns to decorate their pottery, clothing, houses, and other things.  J used his pattern blocks to make different patterns.  I encouraged him to try patterns other than just AB.

Pueblo Kickball Races
These races were very popular in Southwestern tribes. They varied in length from 1 to 25 miles. The balls ranged from 2.5” to 4.5”. they were made of many different materials depending on what was available to the tribe. The Pueblo People often stuffed their balls with the hair from fast animals (horse, rabbit, or big toe of a fast runner in the tribe!)
The ball for this activity may be a softball or students may make their won. Start with a 1” to 2” rock, cover with newspaper, and wrap with masking tape. As chief, the teacher can design the length of the race the way you want. Native Americans ran this race over all type of terrain. They were never allowed to touch the ball with their hands - even if it landed in the water.

Pueblo Village
We did the activity on page 15 and 16 of More Than Moccasins by Laurie Carlson called Pueblo Village.  First we read Pueblos by June Preszler.  We arranged cardboard cereal boxes and shoe boxes with the biggest one on the bottom.  
Then we glued them together and glued them to a larger cardboard base.  We painted the whole thing with a brown paint mixed with cornmeal and added a desert area around the pueblo on the cardboard base.  
For the desert we cut up pieces of green sponge for the moss and added a few small rocks.  
We used a box cutter to cut openings in the roof of the pueblo since the Pueblo tribe didn't have doors in the first story.  
They had to climb ladders to get inside.  We used sticks and glued them together to make the ladders.  
We also cut window too. We used Sculpey modeling clay to create an outdoor cooking oven that the Pueblo called "hornos".

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