We Are One at the Falling of the Sun
Here are the updates on this multicultural children's book!
By Camp Reporter Trevin Ferguson and Volunteer Jody Gropp
Mythology is the study of stories. When cultures pass stories down from one generation to the next, those stories become myths. Usually, specific myths come from specific cultures.
In the case of We Are One at the Falling of the Sun, many cultures come together: Northern African, Chinese and Native American (Algonquin). The beautiful dress and appearance of these cultures are brought to life by the author’s colorful illustrations. In the words of write@253 camper Trevin: “I hadn’t seen that kind of illustration before.”
The words and pictures of the story tell the events of a girl named MeiFai, who comes from the sky and meets Kiros, a merman who lives in a kingdom beneath the sea. Because they are different, their families did not want them to be together. But they learned that things had to “change” because the love of MeiFai and Kiros was so strong. So the leaders of the two cultures compromised so that the sun and the sea, and MeiFai and Kiros, could meet and be together.
Trevin liked the ending because Kiros “wished the right way, and it came true.”
The weighty outcome brings life to the characters and readers alike. A camp volunteer Jody Gropp said, the book contained “Important messages that made me think of my own life.”
These are the qualities of myth that bring culture to life!
Write@253 is a free community writing center. Their summer writing camp, has students ages 4-12 who have been working on plays, newspaper stories and fairy tales.
This writing center grew out of conversations between high school and college writing teachers, counselors and staff at an annual writing workshop one Saturday afternoon in May 2011 at Tacoma Community College. To find out more about Write@253 or how to get involved check out this link: http://write253.wordpress.com
Review from the Intrepid Museum's Amadella Clarke (Brooklyn, NY)
At the Intrepid Museum in New York City, young children 5-7 years old, gathered for a reading of We Are One at the Falling of the Sun, by Tasha Ina Church. They were instantly mesmerized by the vibrant pictures that illuminate the artful storytelling. The children seemed to feel the sorrows and joys of the characters as the characters discovered and perused what matters: love. The children asked questions like: “Why can’t he be up there?” And: “Why can’t she be down there?” I loved their curiosity! They explored the otherworldly creatures that are all too human: mermen and mermaids, guppies, the sun princess. Later, we created our own sea creatures from clay!
During the story, I interjected, asking the children what was the same about the creatures and what was different. Comparisons are a fun, simple way to open young minds. It can allow them to think about other classmates and about themselves.
At the end of the story the children were in awe of the explanation of why the sun meets the ocean. One boy, a seven year old, stated, “Well, it doesn’t mean that that’s why the sun actually meets the ocean; it’s more to show that they can live together, at least some of the times.” At least some of the time…Cultures are beautiful and indeed this book is a celebration of that beauty. It is also beautiful when we can come together, at least some of the time. The realization that we are one enables us to celebrate our uniqueness and see ourselves in the big picture.
Later, Mathew, a 14 year old who has attended the museum’s summer program for many years but now helps out, stated:
“As I was reading the book, I began to piece the story together. Like most people, the protagonist is searching for more, that most believe he will never find. When he meets his love and sees that others disapprove, he sees that he is being denied access to the one he loves simply because they are different. At this point I saw that the leading motive of the story is diversity and tolerance. This book gives children a good look at the world and one of it's common problems, intolerance. Beautifully written, beautiful pictures, and a great story.”
We Are One at the Falling of the Sun is a teacher’s dream- an invitation to the imagination, to the limitless of the mind, to our uniqueness and similarities. While perhaps intended for an audience somewhere in the middle, the group of 5-7 year olds, and the 14 year old reader, gained a great deal from this book. The book is a tool and opens the door to serious discussions…and seriously cool art projects! It meets you, the reader, where you are and takes you someplace you might not have expected.
Eight Rules All Runners Should Know
1) Run Using The One or None Rule
We all love listening to the good cuts, especially when we are working out. I’m not gonna lie, I love it too! Here is the problem. You aren’t aware. Especially, if you’re running. When you have loud music blaring in your ears, you can't hear a potential attacker come up behind you and it also slows your reaction time. More over, what if there is a car, a curb, or a strange animal in your path. There are several reasons to pay attention. Don’t tune out. If you want to listen to music, or in my case Audible books, use the 1 or None Rule! One earbud in, the other one out. If that’s too hard, don’t wear headphones.
2) Know your Routes (That’s right, plural)
Why? If the wrong people know your routine, you are out at a disadvantage. If you know your routes, you know where to run if you find yourself in a bind. You know the possible pitfalls.
3) All the Worlds a Stage, All the Men & Women Merely Players
If dealing with an attacker & you’re near people, you want an audience! The more people, the less likely that person is to attack, the more likely you are to get help! So start making a ruckus!
4) Fire! Fire!
What do you yell if someone is attacking you! If you are near a place that may have people, yell fire! It brings a crowd and camera phones! Everyone wants a picture of this crazy fire! Plus, you’ll have evidence of the attack and can better ID your attacker.
5) Want A Shrubbery?
No! Try to stray away from running near shrubbery, hedges, trees, etc. Attackers may be lingering or lurking around.
There are Runner Personal Alarms that are heard up to 1000 ft. or a 300M range. There is one by Sabre on Amazon. Also use your voice as a tool if you should come in contact with an attacker! Speak with confidence, power, and eye contact! You can also use a rape whistle.
7) Follow the Light
It's important to go to well lit places! If you are running, try running in a well lit area. If someone is attacking you, run to a well lit location where you will be better visible to people who could help you!
8) A Person Is Only As Good As Their Weapon
Look around you for items you can use as weapons. Carry a key or keys with you when you are running so you can interlace them through your fingers if you need to. That way you will be able to use them on soft tissue on the body (especially the throat, eyes, etc.). Did you know it only takes 8-pounds of pressure to break someone's kneecap? Yep! And if you break someone's clavicle, they no longer have use of their arm. Hint, Hint, Wink, Wink.
9) Strength in Numbers
There is strength in numbers. If you want to run with friends, runners groups or a pet, all of these are helpful when wanting to stay safe. If you want to be the lone ranger, let people know where you are. Keep your phone on you and download an app which will allow friends or family to know where you are.
10) Run Tall and Stand Strong
It is important to remember to have shoulders back, head high, and be aware of your surroundings. Be a Force. Remember that predators are looking for an easy target.
11) Forget the Road Less Traveled
If you are running, stay on the path. Also vary up your path. If you have a stalker they may see that you have a set route, so have multiple options.
12) Know Some Moves
Learning self-defense is a skill that everyone should do. No one is above it, doesn't matter how big, strong, or fast you are. So look into local self-defense courses. Or go to my online self-defense course and get the runners discount HERE: www.udemy.com/warriorwomyn/?couponCode=RUNNINGWARRIORS
For more on runners safety visit: www.rrca.org
For Self-Defense Workshops or Individual Instruction, please contact Body In Balance at (808) 661-1116
For Social Media & Online Communications email MauiMediaMaven@gmail.com or NWMediaMaven@gmail.com.