Josie Dances

SKU: 9781681342078

Denise Lajimodiere
Erdrich, Angela
Grade Levels:
One, Two, Three
Book Type:
Minnesota Historical Society Press
Copyright Date:

Sale price$25.00


Denise Lajimodiere, a citizen of the Turtle Mountain Band of Chippewa, highlights her own daughter’s experience at powwow in this book. The artwork is by Angela Erdrich, a Turtle Mountain tribal member. In Josie Dances an Ojibwe girl practices her dance steps, gets help from her family, and is inspired by the soaring flight of Migizi, the eagle, as she prepares for her first powwow. Josie dreams of dancing at next summer’s powwow. But first she needs many special things: a dress, a shawl, a cape, leggings, moccasins, and, perhaps most important of all, her spirit name. To gather all these essential pieces, she calls on her mom, her aunty, her kookum, and Grandma Greatwalker. They have the skills to prepare Josie for her powwow debut. As the months go by, Josie practices her dance steps while Mom stitches, Aunty and Kookum bead, and Grandma Greatwalker dreams Josie’s spirit name. Josie is nervous about her performance in the arena and about all the pieces falling into place, but she knows her family is there to support her. The powwow circle is a welcoming space, and dancers and spectators alike celebrate Josie’s first dance. When she receives her name, she knows it’s just right. Wrapped in the love of her community, Josie dances to honour her ancestors. In this Ojibwe girl’s coming-of-age story.

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