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The Very First Americans by Cara Ashrose

The Very First Americans

by Cara Ashrose, Bryna Waldman (Illustrator)

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showing culture and history of america and how we first started. ages 3-5
  SarahNicole91 | Jun 8, 2015 |
a very informative book about the first Americans, It would be a great addition to any library to show culture and the rich history of america
ages 5-7
source amazon
  bethjones | Jun 6, 2015 |
The Very First Americans by Cara Ashrose is an informational book about Native Americans and how they lived. I enjoyed this picture book mainly for the intricate illustrations. The pen-like drawings help add detail to the complicated aspects of Native American culture. For instance on one page the pillars were carved into various animals and the use of pen really enhances the details of each animal. Also, on each page there is a strip of various objects that represent the Makah tribe, which helps the reader understand their culture. The language is also very simple and straightforward to appeal to a younger audience. It states “the Makah were very good whale hunters. They carved great canoes from the trunks of huge trees.” The audience can clearly understand how the Makah people lived through the transparent language. Overall, I think that this informational book helps the reader understand the history of America, as well as how different the Native American culture is to our own culture now. ( )
  ShakelaWilliams | May 9, 2015 |
This book begins with the first natives’ migration to America and how they got the name “Indians”. Then Cara Ashrose takes the reader from the Northwest Coast to the Woodlands describing several tribes that made their home there and why. There are several examples of each tribe’s customs, traditions, and history. By the end, the reader will have a list of information about several Native American tribes from all over the country.

Personal Experience:
Being Native American is a big reason I chose this book. I thought it would be good to read to my boys. I am also excited about adding this book to my repertoire. Native American history is especially important to Oklahoma education. When I read it to my boys, they were very interested and they enjoyed the illustrations. I also looked up several photographs of some still standing monuments/structures that were built by American Indians.

Classroom Extension Ideas:
1.) The first thing I thought of after reading this book was building a totem pole. If I end up teaching an art class, I could divide the class into groups. Each group will get to pick an animal. Then we would papier-mâché and paint the head. After they were all dry, we could stack them all and attach them for our own version of the Northwest Indian’s totem pole. This can also be done in a regular classroom on a much smaller scale with play-doe.
2.) The Hopi Indians built homes of clay into the mountains called Mesas. These homes were box shaped with few rectangle windows up very high and the doors where on the room. After reading this book, the class could make a Mesa out of a card board box.
3.) The plains Indians built tipis to live in. We could all make our won tipis with construction paper and sticks. After reading this book, I’d explain that The Plains Indians were native to Oklahoma and our surrounding areas. I would let the children decorate their tipis however they like. Then we would display them in our classrooms. ( )
  CamilleSchmidt | Apr 9, 2015 |
Summary of Book: In this book called The Very First Americans it describes and discusses how the Americans first lived. This book has amazing watercolor pictures. This book describes some specifics such as their clothing, art, and the tools they made and used to survive. Through the pictures it helps put a visual picture in the children’s mind to understand how Americans back in the day actually lived.
Personal Reaction to Book: This book stood out to me by the water color paintings. I loved that this book serves as an important tool for children to see and compare how Americans lived back then to how we live today. Great book and illustrations.
Extension Ideas:
1. The students will paint with water colors a picture of how they think Americans back then looked like.
2. The students will do a comparison and contrast of how we live the same now as back then and how there are differences.
  ChristaSparks | Mar 30, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Cara Ashroseprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Waldman, BrynaIllustratormain authorall editionsconfirmed
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Briefly describes some of the hundreds of Indian tribes that lived across America before the arrival of Europeans.

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