Ever have an idea or words just connect with you? This past fall Lynwood Tall Bull came to our school and talked with our students and staff. He believes that everyone should have a rock. We should keep it with us when we are sharing stories, because rocks remember. Later the rocks will help us recall the stories that are important to us. I tried to envision the rocks listening as the wind whispered.
This picture (Jan 2013) is of the cliffs in the Four Dances Recreation area across from Coulson Park (Billings, MT). For me this is the picture I see when I think of the rocks listening to the whispering winds.
My life is intertwined with stories. As a high school student Grandpa Watson, then 94, told me about coming by wagon and settling in Idaho when he was twelve. He told me about the first airplane he saw - it was the first that flew over the divide, and his thoughts when they walked on the moon. My mother told me stories about growing up. I remember all the children's toys and antiques at my Grandma Chandler's home. Mostly I remember the old hand pump in the kitchen, the wood stove and the old oak table with a built in Lazy Susan in the middle. I remember the late night dashes to the rough planked privy outback.
When I look at a historic item - I want to know its story. I have always been inquisitive so it came as a shock when I realized that many students glance at pictures, artifacts etc and never ask for the back story. I have come to understand that students need scaffolding to become critical thinkers. Part of that progression is learning how to ask questions. How to make observations. These are the basic keys to unlocking the hidden stories. The stories that help us understand who we are and who we want to become.