Morenci fourth grade class studies voyageurs 3.19

Written by David Green.

Students in Ruth Marlatt’s class at Morenci Elementary School started off their study of 18th century voyageurs with a book, but the experience didn’t end there.

The fourth grade students tasted a lot of voyageur food before wrapping up the segment last week.

Students read the historic novel “The Young Voyageur” by Dirk Gringhis, a story that centers around Fort Michilimackinac in what is now Mackinaw City.

The students explained that voyageurs explored large areas of northern territory collecting furs, both from trapping animals and trading with the native population.

The fur trade was fashion driven, Mrs. Marlatt said, with furs shipped back to Europe to be made into clothing.

When on the open water, the voyageurs sang songs to coordinate the paddling of their large canoes. When water ran out along rivers, or when they came to impediments, they lifted their canoes and portaged their loads on foot.

Students took turns working together to create food items commonly eaten by the voyageurs, including teacakes, currant scones, soft gingerbread, shortbread, northern cornbread, Sally Lunn bread, sticky tablet candies and fried bannock bread.

Shortbread and teacakes were cited as favorites while bannock bread was rated on the nasty side by several students.

  • Front.splash
    Water Fun—Carter Seitz and Colson Walter take a fast trip along a plastic sliding strip while water from a sprinkler provides the lubrication. The boys took a break from tie-dyeing last week at Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program to cool off in the water.
  • Front.starting
    BIKE-A-THON—Children in Morenci’s Summer Recreation Program brought their bikes last Tuesday to participate in a bike-a-thon. Riders await the start of the event at the elementary school before being led on a course through town by organizer Leonie Leahy.
  • Front.drum
    on your mark, get set, drum!—Drew Joughin (black shirt), Maddox Joughin and Kaleea Braun took the front row last week when Angela Rettle and assistants led the Stair District Library Summer Reading Program kids in a session of cardio drumming. The sports and healthy living theme continued yesterday with a Mini Jamboree at Lake Hudson State Park arranged by the Michigan Department of Natural Resources. Next week’s program features the Flying Aces Frisbee show.
  • Front.art.park
    ART PARK—A design created by Poggemeyer Design Group shows a “pocket art park” in the green space south of the State Line Observer building. The proposal includes a 12-foot sculpture based on a design created by Morenci sixth grade student Klara Wesley through a school and library collaboration. A wooden band shell is located at the back of the lot. The Observer wall would be covered with a synthetic stucco material. City council members are considering ways to fund the estimated $125,000 project and perhaps tackling construction one step at a time.
  • Front.train
    WRECKAGE—Morenci Fire Department member Taylor Schisler walks past the smoking wreckage of a semi-truck tractor on the north side of the Norfolk and Southern Railroad tracks on Ranger Highway. The truck trailer was on the south side of the tracks

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