Dance on a Sealskin

Dance on a Sealskin

by Barbara Winslow, Teri Sloat
     
 
In today's Alaskan Yupik Eskimo communities, villagers still gather in the kashim to sing, drum, and dance, carrying forward the ancient traditions of their forebears. This is the heartwarming fictional story of Annie's "first dance, " a coming-of-age ceremony to signify official entry into the Eskimo community. 20 color illustrations.

Overview

In today's Alaskan Yupik Eskimo communities, villagers still gather in the kashim to sing, drum, and dance, carrying forward the ancient traditions of their forebears. This is the heartwarming fictional story of Annie's "first dance, " a coming-of-age ceremony to signify official entry into the Eskimo community. 20 color illustrations.

Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
(Gr 2-6) --A story that captures the importance of dance as an active expression of the Yupik Eskimo culture, and the significance of passing on traditions from one generation to the next. Annie is nervous, for she is about to perform her ``first dance,'' a coming-of-age rite. The richly descriptive written images simply but insightfully reflect the importance of village traditions and strong family connections, and graphically portray Annie's worry and pride as she prepares for and performs her dance. The pencil and watercolor illustrations fill various parts of each single-and double-page spread, leaving plenty of white space for the clearly readable, well-spaced text. Authentically drawn colorful qaspeqs, fur parkies, seal-skin mukluks, grass and wooden dance fans, walrus-skin drums, and Annie's fur headdress and wolverine belt realistically depict the Native clothing and dance regalia. The northern lights reaching down to earth to carry Grandmother off to be with her ancestors create a visual representation of the spiritual world. This book, like the songs and dances performed at a potlatch to convey oral history, combines powerful writing and vivid illustrations to capture the joy of giving and sharing among the Yupik Eskimos. --Roz Goodman, Bering Strait School District Media Center, Unalakleet, AK
From the Publisher
“Barbara Winslow’s writing creates a magical air while the authentic color and detail of Teri Sloat’s illustrations bring the Yup'ik potlatch alive for young readers. DANCE ON A SEALSKIN is entertaining while also teaching children something of the Yup'ik culture—of the significant role dancing plays as a means of conveying stories to the next generation, and of the importance of family and community. . . ."—Peninsula Clarion (Kenai, Alaska)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780882404431
Publisher:
Graphic Arts Center Publishing Company
Publication date:
05/01/1995
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.75(w) x 10.33(h) x 0.41(d)
Age Range:
9 - 12 Years

Meet the Author

Barbara Winslow, author of DANCE ON A SEALSKIN, has now turned from Alaska to rural Maine for inspiration. She taught school in Alaska and Maine for thirty-six years. Now retired, she and her husband live on an old farm.

Teri Sloat is the author of THERE WAS AN OLD LADY WHO SWALLOWED A TROUT! and BERRY MAGIC, as well as the author and/or illustrator of many other books for children. A former teacher, she lives with her husband north of San Francisco. www.terisloat.com

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