by Eastern Band of Cherokee Indian children
I taught grades 3, 4, 5, and 6 at Cherokee Elementary School
(over a period of 9 years), the students and I particularly
enjoyed hearing their own legends, then retelling them in their
own words. The children's favorite (whatever group I taught)
was Spearfinger. Two versions of the Spearfinger story
are included here, along with a number of other legends.
I never had trouble motivating the students to read and write
when I announced that we would start another legend.
children who worked on these projects are descended from a small
remnant of Cherokee who escaped the Trail of Tears walk to Oklahoma.
hid in the mountains of their homeland, and were finally able
to purchase land (with the help of a white friend who had been
adopted by the tribe), which is now held in trust by the United
States Government. This reservation (in North Carolina)
is known as the Qualla Boundary.