The Choctaw people of Mississippi have a rich history and culture, with many traditions. Among these traditions are basket weaving, beading, dancing, pottery, as well as a unique and beautiful language.
Video courtesy of: Chahta Immi Cultural Center
When creating their baskets, the Choctaw people of Mississippi used what could be found in their environment. Natural materials like berries, bark, flowers, and roots were used to dye reeds. Once finished, baskets were used for carrying many things like produce and clothes. Today, these baskets are still used to hold special treasures.
- What can you create from your environment?
- How do you use baskets?
- Does your family have any traditions?
- Do you have any old objects in your home?
- Reed (noun): tall slender grass which grows in marshes
- Dye (verb): to change or add to the color of an object
- Produce (noun): things which are grown in gardens or farms
- Environment (noun): the surroundings and conditions of the place an organism lives
Beadwork has been an ancient practice of Choctaw people. Beaded sashes are some of the most ancient clothing which remain in use today. These sashes are designed with traditional symbols. Some Choctaw people continue to use beads for clothing and accessories.
- Have you ever made anything with beads?
- What makes up your jewelry?
- What materials are used to make the clothes you are wearing?
- Does your family have any traditional clothing?
- Ancient (adjective): extremely old
- Symbol (noun): something which represents a particular idea
- Design (verb): to plan for a specific purpose
- Do you like to dance?
- Can you show me your favorite dance move?
- How do you use dances to celebrate?
- What are certain settings where people dance? Why do people dance in those settings?
- Traditional (adjective): the usual or older way of doing something in a culture
- Dance (verb): moving to music
- Social (adjective): having to do with people interacting with one another
- Category (noun): a particular selection of a group with similar qualities