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Canku Ota

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(Many Paths)

An Online Newsletter Celebrating Native America



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Favorite Sites


collected by Paul and Vicki

Native Peoples Native Homelands Climate Change Workshop II
An Indigenous Response to the Challenge
November 18–21, 2009
Mystic Lake Casino Hotel, Prior Lake, MN
On the homelands of the Shakopee Mdewakanton Sioux Community
Co-Chairs: Dr. Dan Wildcat (Haskell Indian Nations University) & Winona LaDuke (Honor the Earth)
More than ten years ago, Indigenous peoples came together at the first Native Peoples/Native Homelands Climate Change Workshop with the urgent message that global warming would have the greatest impact on the world's peoples and cultures most closely tied to the land.
Where the Wild Things Are
Although Maurice Sendak's 1963 children's book "Where the Wild Things Are" consists of only ten sentences, it has been a phenomenal international hit, selling over 19 million copies as of last year. Now that it's been adapted into a hit movie by director Spike Jonze, media attention is once again shining on Mr. Sendak, his artwork and this wonderful children's story.
HarperCollinsChildrens: Where the Wild Things Are
The official “Where the Wild Things Are” book site from publisher Harper Collins Children’s features a Maurice Sendak biography, a list of awards won by the book (such as the 1964 Caldecott), and a complete listing of his seventy-nine Harper Collins books. Wow! But the best clicks are the printable goodies: a six-page activity book, a coloring page and a cutout of Max’s royal crown, all found in Extras.

How to Draw Cartoons Online: Where the Wild Things Are
Want to try your own hand at drawing an imaginary monster? Take another look through Sendak’s book, and pay particular attention to the shapes of the monsters, trying to identify the underlying circles and ovals. Then follow these simple illustrated steps, and soon you’ll have created your own wild thing monster to color. “Having completed one of the creatures from ‘Where the Wild Things Are,’ see if you can tackle some of the others -- using a similar approach.”

NWF: Be Out There: Where the Wild Things Are
The National Wildlife Federation has teamed up with the Wild Things movie to “connect kids and families with nature at home, at schools, and in their communities.” To that end, they’ve created a PDF kids guide titled “Find the Wild Thing in You,” a parents and teachers activity guide to the movie, and a printable activity poster. All these downloads are really big, so be patient. But your patience will be rewarded with activity ideas such as a monster mobile, Wild Things bingo, and a crown pattern to cut out and wear.

Reading Rockets: Family Literacy Bag: Where the Wild Things Are
A Family Literacy Bag is a printable activity booklet, bookmark, parent info sheet, and parent survey designed to be placed in a Ziploc bag by a teacher and sent home with a book. But for our purpose, you’ll find great value here whether you’re a parent, a teacher, librarian or scout leader. The “Where the Wild Things Are” activity book includes a kitchen project (“Max must have been hungry! Would your child be willing to give up a kingdom for a favorite food?”) and a collage project using images of day and night. “While sorting, talk with your child about how they feel whne they wake up, during the day and when they go to bed at night.”

Terrible Yellow Eyes
Terrible Yellow Eyes is a collection of artwork inspired by “Where the Wild Things Are” put together by artist Cory Godbey, who says this about it: “Simply put, like a visual love letter to the book, with Terrible Yellow Eyes I am seeking to celebrate and promote the original masterwork by Maurice Sendak in the best way I know how -- with pictures.” I loved it, and I’m certain you will too.

Pumpkin Carving
My childhood pumpkin memories look nothing like these fancy pumpkins. When did pumpkin carving get so elaborate? I can't say, but these pumpkin patterns do look fun. Whether your interest is just in browsing the photo galleries, or you're out to learn how to create your own pumpkin masterpiece, these sites are sure to please.

DLTK: Pumpkin Carving Patterns
"While you can muddle through some of the simpler designs with serrated knives, tablespoons and a small nail, you'll be well served investing in some pumpkin carving tools if you plan on attempting some of the more detailed designs." I love the patterns here because they come with really simple instructions for beginners. Designs include Sponge Bob, scary cats, Thomas the Tank Engine, spiders, spider webs, skulls, haunted houses, and a number of traditional jack-o'-lantern faces.

Extreme Pumpkins
"Pumpkin carving has been reborn. This time it is a little bit deformed." These whacked-out pumpkins from the mind of Tom Nardone are not for the toddler set. At Extreme Pumpkins you'll find "shocking, funny, and gross" pumpkin designs such as a puking pumpkin, a flaming head pumpkin, and a worm infested pumpkin. In addition to the free pumpkin patterns, the site has info on preserving pumpkins with Clorox bleach, making fake blood, and carving a person's likeness onto a pumpkin from a digital photograph.

Family Fun: Pumpkin Carving Ideas
For ten simple tips for carving success, start with Family Fun's Jack-O'-Lanterns 101 (the link is near the bottom of the page, listed under Carving Tips & Tricks.) The projects themselves are divided between free carving patterns (such as Marshmallow Man and Jeepers Creepers) and pumpkin craft projects that don't involve intricate carving. These include ideas such as Painted Pumpkins, Decoupage Pumpkins, and Mr. Pumpkin Head, who has a face composed of cardboard features attached with adhesive felt.
Pumpkin Carving 101
Pumpkin Carving 101 is the encyclopedia of pumpkin carving. It offers a history of the jack-o'-lantern, advice on choosing a pumpkin, tips on growing pumpkins, a guide to carving tools, how to light your pumpkin, how to photograph your pumpkin and more. Of particular interest to those just starting out with stencil carving, are their lessons on how to make a pumpkin stencil and how to use a pumpkin stencil.

The Pumpkin Wizard
"This site specializes in three toned pumpkin carving patterns, which require an additional step of peeling the outside and some of the flesh from the pumpkin. This adds greater depth and eye popping realism to your carvings." With 570 free pumpkin carving patterns and a forum for asking and answering pumpkin carving questions, the Pumpkin Wizard is a one-stop shop for pumpkin carving fanatics.

Animal Pictures
Browsing for animal pictures can be a fun mommy-and-me activity for preschoolers, or part of a homework assignment for older students. Today's collection includes photos from both professional and amateur photographers, but sometimes its very hard to tell them apart. Animal Pictures is an online photography community that offers photo hosting, contests and online photography education. This page is the first of their gigantic animal and wildlife photo gallery. These beautiful, and sometimes funny, photos are a joy to browse. Some are photo-contest winners, and others have been tagged as a favorites by community members. You can see these honors in the icons displayed below each thumbnail. There are no free memberships here, but there is a free newsletter for photography buffs.
Flickr: All Animals
This page is from the Flickr group “All Animals” which has more than 20,000 members and 415,000 photos. A Flickr group is free to join, and includes a discussion board in addition the photo gallery. The group gallery can be explored by tags (such as nature, kitty, or deer) or by the Flickr group search function. To find photos you can use in a school report or on a website, search for “Creative Commons” but be sure to read each copyright carefully, as they are not all the same. Animal Pictures
With over 10,460 animal pictures, JungleWalk is pretty big. Use the Quick Search function to find a specific species. Or, on the left-hand vertical menu, animals are categorized (dogs, horses, cats, birds, and so on) and available on an alphabetic menu A to Z. Unfortunately, what you see is what you get: these images can not be enlarged. The site exists to sell photo magnets, mousepads, and other gifts for animal lovers, but the large searchable gallery can be enjoyed for its own sake or to send animal e-cards to friends and family.
National Geographic: Animals
“Take a look at wildlife at its best and download free desktop wallpapers.” The animal features at National Geographic always have amazing photos, but there’s more than just pictures here. There are also articles, quizzes, printable animal fact sheets, video, audio, and animal news. Fastest way to the animal fact sheets is the scrollable Animals A-Z widget in the right-hand column. Look below the Animal Features headline to find a link to the Animal Photo Galleries, where you’ll find hundreds of (beautiful) species-specific pictures.
National Zoo: Animal Photo Gallery
“Take a virtual visit to the National Zoo by exploring the photo galleries. You can also learn about many of the species from all over the world found here at the Zoo.” These galleries are arranged by zoo exhibit: African Savanna, Asian Animals, Amazonia, and so on. The photo pages include links to species fact sheets and multimedia extras such as audio files (listen to animal sounds) or web cams where you can watch the zoo enclosure during EST daylight hours. For direct links to the animal wallpaper for your computer desktop, look under Related Links in the left-hand column.
Magic Tricks
Abracadabra! Looking to impress your friends with a few magic tricks? Using video and illustrated step-by-step instructions, this week's selections have magic tricks for all levels of experience. Some are geared strictly for kids, using only common household items such as paperclips and rubber bands, while others use magic supplies such as wands and silk handkerchiefs. For even more magic tricks, here's a free reprint of "The Book of Magic" by A. Frederick Collins,
Activity TV: Magic Tricks for Kids
With online video, online instructions, a companion printable instruction sheet in PDF, and On Demand viewing for some cable TV subscribers, Activity TV has kids' magic covered! Magician Ryan Oaks is your host for these instructional videos, which are rated by difficulty level, and organized by categories such as rope tricks and card tricks. Each trick page gives you to the opportunity to rate the trick and to submit a comment. With more than a hundred tricks, Activity TV is my magic trick site of the week.
Just ten tricks are revealed at Richard Robinson's AllMagic site. Here's where to find them. Under Movies, you'll find video instruction for Ball Production, the Mod French Drop, Shuffled Out Aces and the Swivel Cut. You'll also find illustrated instructions by clicking on the menu items Cards, Coins, Closeup, Mental and Stage. These tricks are not specifically for kids, so they are a bit harder than those at Activity TV, and some require special equipment, such as sponge balls, or an ESP card deck.
Card Trick Central
Although the writing style and illustrations suggest that Classic Magic is a reprint from many years ago, the magic tricks themselves are timeless. You'll find illustrated instructions for card tricks, coin tricks, sleight of hand, close up magic (to be performed at a table) and even tricks with rabbits and birds. "The gentleness and docility of the rabbit makes it, like the dove, a favorite with the conjuror, who does not hesitate to produce it from a hat, and to cause it to disappear from, and re-appear in, most unexpected places."
Classic Magic
Although the writing style and illustrations suggest that Classic Magic is a reprint from many years ago, the magic tricks themselves are timeless. You’ll find illustrated instructions for card tricks, coin tricks, sleight of hand, close up magic (to be performed at a table) and even tricks with rabbits and birds. “The gentleness and docility of the rabbit makes it, like the dove, a favorite with the conjuror, who does not hesitate to produce it from a hat, and to cause it to disappear from, and re-appear in, most unexpected places.”

Learn Free Magic Tricks is a video aggregator specializing in magic videos. Some of the videos are simply magic performances, and others include tutorials. The videos on the front page are the newest ones, and the collection appears to be growing daily. There are categories (Card Tricks, Coin Tricks, Street Magic, Illusions, etc.) listed down the right-hand side. But if you are looking for something specific, I suggest using the search function, as the site is quite big.

Pilgrims of Plymouth
The Pilgrims were a English Separatist congregation that emigrated to Holland in 1608 to escape religious persecution. Twelve years later, discouraged by economic conditions, the congregation voted to move again, this time to America. A small ship, the Speedwell, carried them to Southampton, England, where they joined another group of Separatists and finally departed from Plymouth, England aboard the Mayflower in 1620.

Mayflower Families: The Pilgrims
Built as a genealogy resource to help site visitors trace their roots back to the Mayflower, Mayflower Families also serves students researching Pilgrims for homework or a school project. In addition to the brief history offered at this page, you’ll find a modern translation of the Mayflower Compact and the Colonial Gazetteer, which offers a unique view of Pilgrim life as it reports colonial events as if they had just happened.

Pilgrim Hall Museum: Pilgrim Story
The Pilgrim Hall Museum site has oodles of great educational material. This page is the start of the illustrated kids section which answers questions about the Pilgrims and the natives. “The Pilgrim Story – the hazardous voyage, the 1620 landing, the fearful first winter, the First Thanksgiving at Plymouth – is the treasured heritage of all Americans. This dramatic saga of courage and perseverance has inspired the American people throughout the nation’s history.”
Plimoth Plantation: Who Were the Pilgrims?
“The Englishmen who sailed on the Mayflower were a very unusual mixture of people from many different backgrounds. Some came from big cities like London, others came from small towns and villages in the country.” Listed under Kids in the horizontal menu, you’ll find pilgrim coloring pages, recipes for native dishes such as succotash, homework help, and stories told from a kid’s perspective. Homework help includes articles about the Wampanoag natives, the Mayflower, and the first Thanksgiving.
Scholastic: Research Starters: Plymouth Colony
Need ideas for a Plymouth Colony research project? This Scholastic site is a great resource, with a glossary, a list of articles from Grolier Online, and topics “to explore that relate to the Plymouth Colony. Looking at the articles, images, and other materials in this Research Starter may give you more ideas.” For further research, there is a resource list of additional websites.

Thanksgiving on the Net: Pilgrims and America’s First Thanksgiving
“On Sept. 6, 1620 the Pilgrims set sail for the New World on a ship called the Mayflower. They sailed from Plymouth, England and aboard were 44 Pilgrims, who called themselves the ‘Saints’, and 66 others, whom the Pilgrims called the ‘Strangers.’ The long trip was cold and damp and took 65 days.” In addition to this article about the history of Thanksgiving, this holiday site includes recipes, crafts, coloring pictures, and ideas for Thanksgiving decorations.

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Students And Teachers Against Racism announces their new website that offers insight into the Native American perspective to teachers and educators.

Changing Winds Advocacy Center
Through presentations, classroom sessions, curriculum, fund raising, charitable works, and multi-media efforts, we seek to raise public awareness of the stereotyping, discrimination, racism and other unique situations facing Native Americans.

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  Canku Ota is a free Newsletter celebrating Native America, its traditions and accomplishments . We do not provide subscriber or visitor names to anyone. Some articles presented in Canku Ota may contain copyright material. We have received appropriate permissions for republishing any articles. Material appearing here is distributed without profit or monetary gain to those who have expressed an interest. This is in accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107.  

Canku Ota is a copyright © 2000, 2001, 2002, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009 of Vicki Lockard and Paul Barry.

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