We have been hard at work for the past few weeks studying how Native American Indians hunted and trapped animals. There are a variety of different traps and methods used to hunt. Each method is perfectly suited to the type of animal the hunter hopes to capture or kill. We learned that the deadfall was ideal for capturing large animals like bears. The V-trap allowed the Indians to work in cooperation with each other to kill more than one deer at a time. The snare trap was used to capture smaller prey like rabbits, squirrels and birds. The weir was an elaborate construction that trapped many fish inside of the fence at low tide.
The class was divided into four groups and each group was tasked with building a model of one of the traps that we studied. First the children met and developed a plan of action, then they gathered the materials needed for the assignment. They quickly moved into the construction phase and their excitement grew as the trap developed.
After completing the project, each group met with a teacher to formulate and record all of the steps required to make their model.
This has been such a wonderful lesson, allowing the children to combine language arts, social studies and art into one project. The traps will be on display in our classroom throughout the remainder of our Native Americans Unit.