Phoenix Rising students got an unexpected treat last Tuesday when Blue Thunder, an elder of the Shoshone tribe, dropped by for a visit. Along with his companion Kristine, he talked with the students about communicating with nature and healing the earth.
Here’s what students and staff had to say about his visit:
Cailin: I didn’t know some of the things we were doing were possible, like talking to the trees. He asked, ‘Who hears messages from the trees? Who hears messages from the earth?’ and all these kids were raising their hands. He really showed how everything we do affects the earth. It shows the unity between nature and humans and how we need to respect our environment.
Olivia: We talked to the earth. It was cool. You could feel the energy from the earth. I knew that trees and things could talk but I didn’t really know how to communicate with them. He did this seal thing where if someone had broken a branch, you put your hands over whatever it was, like a rock, and then you can talk to it and you say, “seal.”
Jainkoa: It was awesome. It blocks it up so the energy stops leaking out.
Noah: It was cool that he could hold this little spinner over a tree and see how much energy it was emitting. If you put your right hand out and said, ‘seal’ and put the spinny thing over again, it would stop spinning.”
Vincent: He taught us to think before we do anything in nature. It was awesome.
Trajan: It was actually kind of cool, because we got to speak with nature.
Evan: It was kind of weird with the dancing and speaking with the earth. Otherwise, I liked walking around and just looking at stuff.
Aaron: I liked that we had the flexibility to incorporate unique events. That’s a big piece of who we are. We’ll attract those kinds of dynamic, out-of-the box opportunities because we make room and allow them to come in.
Yelm is a small town, and to me, with cultural diversity you can learn so much in just a small amount of time from other cultures and other traditions. I’d love to see more of that, too. I don’t know much about Native American culture, and I think a lot of the kids were fascinated by that experience. Real experiences make an impact on the kids more than just talking.
Duke: It was awesome! He taught us the Native American rituals.
Aris: The rock told me it wanted nobody higher [taller] than me to climb on it.
Azura: I liked doing the tree dance. I felt like I was flying.
Charlotte: I thought that it was really cool. My mom really likes Native Americans, and this was all about that. I liked it.
Natasha: It was really exciting to learn about somebody else’s culture, their ceremonies, the dances and the songs. I really liked it and I think we should do more.
To view a photo gallery of Blue Thunder’s visit, click here: https://picasaweb.google.com/110934773891617159253/20120411BlueThunder?authuser=0&authkey=Gv1sRgCLLw-tqH-aKjfw&feat=directlink