Monthly Archives: February 2010

Episode 71: Whipping Top

During the free time between planting and weeding, Bunon boys spin tops for entertainment. They use whips to make tops go as fast as they can. The game symbolizes Bunon’s wish for millets to grow faster. The teacher explains the best place to whip the top as well as the behavior of the axis before it stops.


Episode 70: Preservation with Wood Ash

Before there were refrigerators, indigenous peoples would smoke meat to preserve it. However, there is another way to preserve food. This episode’s indigenous expert uses wood ash to seal bottles. Using water, wood ash can be hardened to prevent molds and repel bugs. Sometimes they would use smoke to get rid of bugs in the house. It works the same way for food! This kind of natural preservative is even better and healthier than modern artificial preservatives! By absorbing the moisture in the air, wood ash can stave off the black beans’ expiration date.

Episode 69: Smoked Meat

The Sediq, who live near mountains and forests have always been excellent hunters. Every time, they could bring back a lot of meat, sometimes more than they can bring home. In this episode, Taws uses experimentation to show kids why elders need to smoke meat, and how they preserve food without a refrigerator. Through heat, the quality of protein changes, moisture decreases, but the nutritional value stays the same. It is just one of the many indigenous methods for preserving food.

Episode 68: Picture Calendar

The Bunon uses the lunar calendar. A year is divided into 12 months, and one month into 30 days. They use knots to record days. One knot equals one day. 30 knots fills a month. When hunters go into the mountains to hunt, they also use knots to record days. In this episode, Taws shows us the different phases of the moon. When the Earth, Moon, and the Sun is one line, that is the first of a lunar month, and we can’t see the moon. One rotation of the moon equals one month.