The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush Tomie dePaola Description

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The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush

Tomie dePaola

  • This is a social studies lesson in which students will compare and contrast the western Native American tribes and the Georgia Creek and Cherokee tribes.

Academic Objective

a. Describe the regions in Georgia where the Creek and Cherokees lived and how the people used their local resources.
Brilliant Star Objective

  • Spiritual Development: Students will be able to identify the importance of a deep connection to themselves, others, nature, or to a higher power.

Essential Question

  • How are different Native American tribes alike and different?

Activating Strategy

  • Read the story, The Legend of the Indian Paintbrush, by Tomie dePaola.

  • Have students create a web or spider map to show details of how the Native Americans (in this legend) lived. Guide students toward the main ideas of: where they lived (i.e. Great Plains, the west, teepees, migrating), how they got food (i.e. hunting, gathering), clothing (animal skins), etc.

1. Explain to students that when we see movies or TV shows, Native Americans are usually shown like the ones they just described in their webs, but there were other tribes besides those in the west.

2. Tell students that they are going to learn about two tribes from Georgia, called the Creeks and the Cherokees.

Guided Practice
1. Provide students with a list of questions to research. (i.e. Where did they live? How did they get food? What kind of clothes did they wear? How did they feel about nature and spirituality? What chores did kids do? How did kids have fun? Did you find any interesting facts?)

2. Assign students to a small group and tell them which tribe you would like them to research.

3. Explain to students that after all groups have researched the tribes, they are going to be partnered with another group, so that each team has researched a different tribe. Each group will teach the other group about their tribe.

  • After working in groups to learn about both tribes, students will write a short essay (one page or less) explaining what they learned about the Creek and Cherokee Indian tribes.

Recommended Websites for Students



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