by April Wilsey
The Classroom Amasani Program recently presented mini rug shows for Trailside Elementary School in Park City and Community Montessori School in Salt Lake City.
There were 100 second graders who attended the rug show at Trailside Elementary School that was held in the gymnasium during school hours. Some of the activities the students participated in were: making a talking stick, grinding corn, hair tying, experiencing some weaving on a loom, and learning about the rugs made by Navajo children on the reservation. The students seemed to enjoy the activities and were able to keep the talking sticks that they made with their partners.
Shirlee Silversmith taught the students to grind corn while listening to a corn grinding song sung in Navajo.
Carla Sydenham and Linda Myers talked to the students about how the rugs were made by Navajo children.
Tanisha Quintana did traditional hair tying for the students.
The students experienced weaving at a two-sided loom.
The students enjoyed making talking sticks. A talking stick was used by the Navajo while having group discussions. The person holding the talking stick was the person who was allowed to talk. This solved the problem of people interrupting one another.
The rug show held at the Community Montessori School in SLC was held in the evening in their gymnasium. About 50 people, including parents and children, attended the show. The parents seemed to enjoy experiencing the Navajo culture with their children. Adopt-A-Native-Elder Program’s Shiyazhi Princess, Sariah Williams, was able to attend this evening show wearing traditional Navajo clothing and performing a dance with her father, Jonathan.
Shiyazhi Princess, Sariah Williams, and her father, Jonathan, performed the Eagle Dance.
Rodger Williams helped students make talking sticks.
Beverly Benally helped the children experience weaving at the loom.
There were books about the Navajo culture and a variety of Navajo crafts on display.