Indian Captive Extension Activity
- Grades: 6–8
About this book
1. Illustrate Molly's first year living with the Seneca as a line graph. What are the highest and lowest points of her year? After you've drawn and labeled your line graph, use drawings to depict each of the events in that year. Afterwards, compare your line graph with a classmate's, and talk about why you graphed Molly's year like you did.
This activity helps students review the tumultuous chain of events of Molly's first year with the Seneca, and requires students to gauge Molly's emotional state along the way, as she grieves and begins to adjust to her life with the Seneca. Most students will see the lowest point of Molly's year as the time of her journey to Genesee Town, a time of great physical hardship and despair after meeting the English at Fort Duquesne.
2. Through living with the Seneca, Molly is introduced to many types of utensils and other gear that she had never encountered before - things like baby frames, burden straps, and clay cooking pots. Try to list of as many of these items as you can, and create a mini-encyclopedia to describe them. Use drawings and descriptions to explain the use of these different items.
This activity requires students to pay close attention to the Seneca's way of life by examining the gear and utensils they used. Lenski's drawings of many of these items will help students visualize them. In their mini-encyclopedias, students will likely include items such as bark strip canoes, deerskin leggings, water pails made from bark, baby frames, burden straps, sticks with elk bone for hoeing, carved wood ladles, and a baby mobile called a "spider web."
3. Names have important meanings in the Seneca tribe. In this story, for example, Little Turtle becomes Turkey Feather after he successfully hunts his first turkey, and Corn Tassel becomes Little Woman of Great Courage after she decides to stay with the Seneca. Give yourself a new name with a meaning that shows an important achievement or experience in your life, and write an explanation of your new name.
Students may rename themselves, or they might like to get help from friends and family in choosing a new name.