The Snowman – Dene Story

slide1I am tutoring a boy for my ERDG 425 class, whose first langauge is Dene. He is reading at a PrePrimer (which is equivalent to Kindergarten) level according to the Ekwall / Shanker Reading Inventory. I was trying to find authentic reading material that tapped into his cultural funds of knowledge. I found this very hard because it was hard to find First Nation reading resources that were both at his reading level and of his interests. I found a website with some Dene /Chipewyan resources. I started by trying to incorporate the vocab, myths, and culture into my lessons. I continued my research and found a book with called Dene Stories. This book was written by a group of elders. I was trying to think of a way to present this story to him so that it would capture his attention. I thought back to one of our ECMP 455 classes and the light bulb went off. I would use digital storytelling to tell this oral story. I searched the internet to see if there were any out there and I found that there was a lack of this type of resource on the internet as well. So I made a my own version of the story using powerpoint, clipart, and voicethread. You can view my Dene Story called the Snowman here.

If you have any resources or suggestions, please let me know!

I had some difficulty trying to embed this into wordpress. I tried downloading a plugin, but it didn’t work. Any suggestions?

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5 thoughts on “The Snowman – Dene Story

  1. Alec Couros says:

    There used to be a resource called “Stories in Season” that was developed in SK. I believe it took stories, and had translations in Dene, Dakota, Cree, Saulteaux, etc. I will see if I can find it for you. It may be useful. I can find a reference to it online, but can’t find the CD.

    Thanks for this work you are doing. Excellent use of Voicethread!

  2. Brunsell says:

    This is a great application of VoiceThread. I am looking forward to showing this to my Ed Tech students in at the University of Wisconsin – Oshkosh.

    We are about 30 miles north of Fon du Lac (Wisconsin) and Yatth Dene hasn’t left yet…

  3. SKing says:

    I shared your idea with a grade 8 teacher and she is very anxious to try it herself to help her struggling readers.

    I also thought of two other books that might help you that were put together by the students of Ducharme Elementary in La Loche. One is call Byron and his Balloon and the other is Byron Through the Seasons.
    Good luck in your search for Dene material.

  4. carol gibson says:

    I taught in core Regina and found a real lack of materials that relate to our groups of Aboriginal people in Sask. I did use the Eagle Crest books as they do present images of Aboriginal people though their themes and content relate to the people of the West Coast. My children still liked to see children like them in the books they read. I also created books with them remaking ideas from books we had read. Ex. I read a level two books “Sandwiches” with them and then we made our own sandwiches, took photos and made our own books. We made many remakes of other books we read. This gave purpose to the reading and also gave them a special book from which they loved to share and read to others. Hope this helps.

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