Coyote and Jabuti: A Tale of Two Tricksters
Full Citation
Permanent Link: http://ufdc.ufl.edu/IR00000832/00001
 Material Information
Title: Coyote and Jabuti: A Tale of Two Tricksters
Series Title: Interactive Storytelling Project
Physical Description: Storytelling workshop
Creator: Athayde, Simone
Zeidemann, Vivian
Publication Date: November of 2011
Acquisition: Collected for University of Florida's Institutional Repository by the UFIR Self-Submittal tool. Submitted by Simone Athayde.
Publication Status: Unpublished
 Record Information
Source Institution: University of Florida Institutional Repository
Holding Location: University of Florida
Rights Management:
This item is licensed with the Creative Commons Attribution License. This license lets others distribute, remix, tweak, and build upon this work, even commercially, as long as they credit the author for the original creation.
System ID: IR00000832:00001


This item is only available as the following downloads:

Tale_of_two_tricksters_Dec_11 ( PDF )

Full Text


MYTHSCAPES INTERACTIVE PRODUCTIONS PRESENTS: A TALE OF TWO TRICKSTERS COMMUNICATING SCIENCE THROUGH ART AND INTERACTIVE STORYTELLING NSF RESEARCH DAY, University of Florida, October 25, 2011. By: Simone Ferreira de Athayde PhD and Vivian Zeidemann PhD candidate. Collaboration: Patricia Delamonica Sampaio Ms. Tropical Conservation and Development Program ( TCD) and Amazon Conservation Leadership Initiative (ACLI). Center for Latin American Studies, University of Florida. http :// www.tcd.ufl.edu/about.shtml Adapted from the books by Gerald McDermott 1


Introduction This mini workshop was developed as an example of ways in which we might find creative and engaging ways to communicate science and complex scientific concepts to different audiences The stories of the two tricksters brought here adapting the outstanding work of author and illustrator Gerald McDermott can be used to teach diverse scientific concepts to various educational levels from elementary to graduate school In the end of this booklet you will find suggestions of concepts and disciplinary fields that may be explored through these myths The interactive storytelling approach used in our stories and in the Mythscapes Interactive Productions is based on the philosophy of learning by doing and experiential learning in which the students and audience get engaged in the act of telling the story as characters players of instruments tricksters or narrators Through their engagement in the process of storytelling, the participants feel motivated in learning the content brought in the myths and metaphors, and are able to memorize and make meaning of the concepts worked through an alternative, creative, and fun way 2


Procedure The procedure consists of purposedly not revealing the method and the content to participants beforehand so they can discover and make sense of things by the end of the mini workshop You will need a digital projector and a big room if you plan to have dramatization of the stories The target public can vary from elementary school kids to graduate students up to you to adapt the method and the content for your audience This mini workshop might be developed in a time frame of 30 to 45 minutes, followed by a deepening of concepts brought in the stories, that may be a reading discussion of texts or academic papers, text interpretation, mini lectures or other formats Before you start developing the story ask your participants to pay attention to the content and to the method used to tell the story Then you can ask four volunteers to participate two to be narrators and two to be tricksters The narrators intercalate between the Coyote and Jabuti stories They will be using Coyote and Jabuti badges or labels The will choose two musical instruments (you might bring some instruments used by indigenous peoples in the Western US and in the Brazilian Amazon) 3


You introduce the first slide explaining the geograhical and cultural context of these characters and of the indigenous peoples that tell these stories until nowadays Then the narrators start to read the stories intercalating between the Coyote and the Jabuti Everytime that there is a Trick Coyote or Trick call the person with the musical instrument playing the other character should play the instrument and move his or her body representing what was told about the other character in that slide Nobody knows exactly when they are supposed to trick the other so they have to pay attention and be ready for improvisation In an elementary classroom you can organize a dramatization of the stories dividing the class in two groups : one is the Coyote tribe and the other is the tribe They can be the different characters of the stories In the end both Coyote and Jabuti trick each their instruments they might try to touch each other or run after each other if they want After the stories are told you can proceed to the interpretation and reflection questions in the end They will introduce the themes you will develop in a further moment or class such as ecology and geography anthropology chaos theory complexity conservation and other disciplinary fields as you wish ( see last section for suggestions ) ENJOY OUR TRICKSTERS! 4


Coyote is from the Southwest Region of the US. His tales are told by North American Indigenous peoples, such as the Zuni, the Lakota and the Hopi, among many others. Jabuti is from the Amazonian region in Brazil. His tales are told by Amazonian Indigenous peoples. Hopi students Xingu Park students Matari Kaiabi Geographic and Cultural Background


Coyote. Blue Coyote. He was going along, following his nose. He had a nose for trouble. Once, he stuck his nose got bitten. Jabuti played a song on his flute. His shell was smooth and shiny, and his song was sweet. All the creatures of the rain forest listened to his song. For some, song was sour. Jaguar could remember when Jabuti tricked him chasing his own tail. TRICK COYOTE! Then, he wanted to look as beautiful as the woodpecker, with a flaming red head, but The Tricksters 6


Coyote came to a place where earth meets sky. He heard laughing and singing. He saw a flock of crows. They were chanting and dancing. He saw the crows flying through the canyon. He wanted to be like them: greatest coyote in the world! The birds loved music, and they sang when he played. All except vulture, who could not sing at all. He was jealous of Jabuti and waited for the day when he could eat the little tortoise. 7


Coyote called the crows and asked permission to join them. some fun with him! But Coyote not only wanted to dance, he wanted to fly too. He envied the crows. There came a time when all the birds were invited for a festival in heaven. The King of Heaven called them together to sing, to rejoice, and to receive his blessing. When he knew about the festival, Jabuti wanted to go too. TRICK JABUTI! 8


The crows plucked feathers from their left Jabuti said. Jabuti pleaded. tortoise. 9


The crows soared into the sky. Coyote followed. He tilted to one side, since his feathers were only from the left wing of each bird. started to pluck feathers from their right wings Jabuti they flew high above the treetops. They had almost reached heaven when Vulture swooped and turned upside down. Jabuti slipped off his back, tumbling down through the sky. He cried out: Twigs and bushes, Flowers and trees, Move aside, Make way for me TRICK JABUTI! TRICK COYOTE! 10


Coyote has become rude and boastful. The crows were no longer having fun. All the plants and trees spread apart to make way for Jabuti but he forgot to call to the rock. Jabuti fell into the rock and his smooth, shiny shell broke into pieces. The birds flew into the sky. Coyote hopped along, struggling to keep up. At that moment, the festival in heaven stopped. Where is Jabuti Vulture answered. 11


The crows circled Coyote but Instead, they took back their feathers, one by one. Toucan, Macaw and Hummingbird found Jabuti He was lying helplessly in the forest. His beautiful shell was broken. The birds gathered the pieces and patched him together. 12


To this day, he is the color of dust and his tail has a burnt, black tip. He always finds it! He fell so fast, his tail caught fire. Jabuti played a song of thanks for them. And where the birds have touched Jabuti they each took on a new color. To this day, tortoises have their shell Vulture stayed the same dull color. He still TRICK EACH OTHER! 13


INTERPRETATION AND REFLECTION Questions to instigate thinking and reflection: Are there similarities among these stories? Give 1 example What can you learn from these stories? How did you feel participating in the storytelling process by playing instruments and moving your body? What metaphor(s) can you learn from Jabuti and Coyote stories? How could you apply these stories to situations in your own life? What scientific concepts could be learned from these stories? C ould you use this stories in your own research or teaching activities? How? 14


APPLICATIONS Learning Method : Experiential learning, learning by doing, interactive storytelling The students metaphors, enhancing the learning experience. Other methods: crafts, text interpretation, class projects, storytelling techniques (digital, puppets, theatre, drama, etc ). Content s uggestions of themes for: Elementary/middle school level : ecology, geography, zoology, social studies, indigenous peoples studies, music and art. College and graduate level : Systems Theory working the concepts of chaos and order, uncertainty and surprise (tricksters). Anthropology working the concepts of oral traditions, myths and metaphors, indigenous cosmology and cultural memory. Art drama, illustration, aesthetics, digital design, music and musical instruments. Ecology working the concepts of ecosystems, biogeography, animal species, and biodiversity. Psychology interpreting the metaphors about human behavior, archetypes and attitudes contained in the myths. 15


CREDITS Mythscapes Interactive Productions. 2011. Simone Ferreira de Athayde PhD and Vivian Zeidemann PhD candidate, University of Florida. Contacts: simonea@ufl.edu vivianz@ufl.edu Adapted from: Gerald McDermott books: Coyote A trickster tale from the American Southwest. 1994, Voyager Books, Harcourt Brace & Company, San Diego/New York/London. Jabuti The Tortoise A trickster tale from the Amazon. 2001, Harcourt Inc San Diego/New York/London. www.geraldmcdermott.com References on Experiential Learning, Constructivism and Learning by doing: David Kolb and the Experiential Learning Cycle : http ://weatherhead.case.edu/faculty/David Kolb / http://www.ldu.leeds.ac.uk/ldu/sddu_multimedia/kolb/static_version.php Paulo Freire and the Pedagogy of Freedom: http:// en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paulo_Freire Constructivism ( Learning Theory): http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Constructivism_(learning_theory ) Maps : http://www.americansouthwest.net/map.html http ://www.lib.utexas.edu/maps/americas.html http ://news.mongabay.com/2011/0420 protected_amazon.html THANK YOU!! 16