Subject: Language Arts/ Social Studies/ Creative Writing
Topic: Bering Strait Theory and First Nation Creation Stories
Time Frame: Three lessons 45- 60 minute periods. Time could also be allocated for research which could be 60-120 minutes.
Objectives: Students will be able to compare and contrast the Bering Strait theory with that of the First Nation Creation story of their choice. Students will be able to read over various First Nation Creation stories. Students will look for the commonalities within the Creation Stories. Students will be made aware that there is more than one theory of how First Nations people came to the Americas rather than the traditional scientific theory of the Bering Strait.
Methodology: Present the Bering Strait theory in lecture format to the students. Have students look on the internet and in the library for First Nation Creation stories. Once they have selected their story have them identify the main characters of the story and retell the story in their own words in paragraph form. Have the students break into groups of three or four to tell their story and to talk about the stories they found.
Materials: Lecture notes for Bering Strait Theory and Student Handout, First Nation Creation Stories, Access to Internet, Access to School Library, Language Arts Note book or Loose leaf paper.
Space Requirements: Classroom and other areas where students can break into small groups.
Background Information: Within most schools the accepted norm was to teach children that all First Nations people came from a Mongolian tribe in China through the Bering Strait, it is just within recent years that while that theory is being taught several other theories are taught to balance that theory. The Creation stories of First Nation people often depict water, ask the students to look for these commonalities. Have students identify how the Creation stories differ from the Bering Strait Theory. Explain to students that a “theory” is basically an educated guess based upon scientific evidence.
Evaluation: Peer group evaluation and student evaluation.