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Life in the New World

Brennan Cook


At dawn in the Wampanoag village, the pinkish-blueish sky stretches along the shore. The men have gone hunting for a deer. I go walking as the wind whistles through the trees. My name is Watsayeta. I live with my family and one other family. When the men come home, my father and I go to check the pit traps for rabbits and squirrels. I am Osage, Wampanoag and Patuxet. I live near the Pilgrim homes. They came here in 1620. They love the luscious sky here, a pilgrim boy told me.


I see my sister walking near the wavy water. Our people are awake and they are praying on the hilltop where you can see the glowing sky exploding with color as the sun rises peacefully. Smokey purple clouds drift along our village. The hills look wavy like the water. My sister is happy for the long feast we’re going to have with the Pilgrims.


I go walking by the Pilgrim village. Puffy clouds float like cotton candy towards the sun. My parents told me that the clouds tell us stories of our ancestors. The water races along the shore. It’s beautiful in the daytime, I think. Sometimes, I feel I want to be a Pilgrim. I am going to play with a Pilgrim boy because Massasoit sent a messenger to say that the Pilgrims have made peace with our village. I have been watching the Pilgrims all day long! I wish I could be a watchman. The feast is coming soon with the Pilgrims. We are going to have lots and lots of food.


Greenish-reddish trees rattle in the wind. As I walk toward the Pilgrim village, I spot my sister playing with the Pilgrim boy. She beat me there! I walk home sadly but I’m glad my sister is happy playing ball. Daytime is fading away! I am happy now, because dinner is going to happen in a little bit and I am starving! My dad went to see the traps I had set. We caught two squirrels, four rabbits, and one deer. My mother is proud of me for doing so well at setting the traps. Tonight my father will teach me how to catch fish with a spear. I am excited for my father to pass down what he learned from his father.


The sky shatters with darkness as my father and I drift along the bank in our mishoon! Fish jump up and down as the fiery stick attracts them. My father teaches me to spear the fish with all my might. Then we pull them into the mishoon. The moon sparkles on the water. I can smell the fire that my mother & sister made to cook the fish. A pack of birds stole most of our crops last night. So we have to catch a lot of fish. The harvest feast is happening tomorrow! I can’t wait for it to start! We are going to play games with the Pilgrim children. There will be different games for the men. And there will be lots of food! I see the moon shining on our wetus way up at the top of the hill. I think about my friends falling asleep with their families. I feel like I am becoming a man.


This is one of the many books which came to life while the students of Mrs. Mattson’s 3rd grade class explored the rich relationship between visual imagery and the written word. This Time of Day book was created as a part of Picturing Writing: Fostering Literacy Through Art®, an art-andliterature-based

writing

program

developed

by

Beth

Olshansky at the University of New Hampshire. The program is designed to support the acquisition of literacy skills in children with diverse learning styles. A researchbased literacy program, Picturing Writing has proven its effectiveness in dramatically improving student writing. After

a

visit

to

Plimoth

Plantation

in

Plymouth,

Massachusetts, our class combined the Time of Day unit with our study of the Wampanoag Indians and Pilgrims to create our own, unique visions of “A Day in the Life of Plantation.”

December, 2010

Brennan's Book online  

Brennan Cook Life in the New World