Recently I was able to attend the opening of a new museum. Without having to leave the Rainbow Mountain campus I was able to tour a top notch Cherokee Museum built, curated and presented by the second grade Cheetahs. As an end to their thematic unit on the Cherokee People the Cheetahs gathered all their Cherokee projects, which were many, to display in their museum that took over their classroom and the school’s media lab.

I saw handmade baskets, a constructed Cherokee Village using, twigs, moss, bark and detailed with clay, handmade pottery bowls which were fired in the earth in our outdoor classroom, flags to correspond to each students personal Cherokee story, and other works of art. On the walls in the first room hung large posters. Each poster made by a different student on a Cherokee topic. Topics included medicine and herbs, weapons, games and toys, the Seven Clans, history of the Cherokee, the Cherokee language, farming and food, and art and spirit. Students, dressed in their Cherokee vest, headdresses and anklets, which they made, stood next to their posters talking to museum visitors about their topic and showing us an artifact, which they also made, that went with their poster.

Following my tour through the Cherokee Museum my group was asked to please go into the second room and have a seat on the blankets. What followed was a Cherokee ceremony preformed and designed by the Cheetahs thanking the four directions and their performance of the Hawk Dance.

I would recommend a visit but sadly the museum has now been turned into a classroom where second graders are starting a new thematic unit. I honestly can’t wait to see what they come up with at the end of this one.

Once again, good job Cheetahs!

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