To learn about the Canadian culture and practice elements of physics as we build inukshuks.
Discuss the Canadian culture (You can use our slideshow if you would like, or use the jpegs at the bottom of the post.)
Return rocks to their place of origin
We love traveling. Obviously, who doesn't. Our kids have been fortunate enough to visit a wide array of places in their short lives. But just because they've been blessed to travel, we didn't want them to take it for granted. We want them to understand and appreciate the cultures around the world.
So, for the summer, we began a series of Fun Fridays exploring the world and cultures that differ from ours. We decided to start in North America and then make our way around. What better place to begin than in Canada. Oh, Canada!
We did a short study of the Inuit people and collected rocks to build miniature inukshuks. And if nothing else, they had fun saying the word over and over, literally over and over, and over, and over, over, over.
So here's the deal. The word Eskimo has been deemed offensive, so they are now known as Inuits, which simply translates to people. I feel that is important to point out because we have to keep up with the times here at Little Life Explorers.
Up in the Arctic, everything is white. You look around and all you see is white. White everywhere. Beautiful, but not so helpful for the landmarks. "Bob, there's a good fishing hole if you just turn right at the second patch of white snow." :/
So, to help as a sort of road map, the Inuit people created inukshuks. They are piles of rocks stacked to look like people. They were not only good landmarks, but also good to hide behind to attack unknowing caribou.
So, for this Fun-Sized Friday, we went and collected rocks to make miniature inukshuks. As parents, we have a hard time just letting our kids play. They should always be accomplishing or creating, but the act of stacking rocks is highly entertaining for them. Plus, they learn basic physics on their own terms. What types of rocks will stack, what will make the rocks fall over, what happens when they fall over, which way will they fall...They learn and adapt their structures based on failed experiments.
Check out the video to see our Little Life Explorers create inukshuks, then collect rocks to make your own.
Note: We returned all rocks to their previous origins when we were done.