Monday, November 19, 2007

Native American Heritage Week

Last week, in addition to being Oklahoma's Centennial, was Native American Heritage Week. Here are some photos of the events that took place at several of our schools.
There were mini-powwows at the schools with explanations of the costumes and dances of the Ponca tribe.

Here is a jingle dancer. The Jingle Dance is a medicine dance. A man was very ill once upon a time, and had a vision of this style of dress and a particular dance. He believed that if his daughter wore such a dress while doing the dance, he would be healed.

This is a grass dancer. The name for this dance comes from his job at the beginning of a powwow to tramp down the tall prairie grass for the other dancers. He's also called this because his costume mimics the movement of the grass. This young man is a middle school student who absolutely made the girls in his school swoon when he danced.

This young man is a fancy dancer -- symbolized by the bustles on his back and on his shoulders. He is a world champion dancer and is still in elementary school. By the end of the day I think he was probably in a euphoria caused by the frenzied dance. His school was the last stop of the day and he really, really poured his heart into it.

Three young women who do Southern Plains dancing taking a break before their last dance. They are all sixth-graders, if you can believe it.

1 comment:

TECH said...

Very cool!