Where the Buffaloes Begin

Where the Buffaloes Begin Follow Little Wolf to the fabled lake in the south where the buffaloes begin Watch the huge beasts surge out of the water and onto the prairie as Little Wolf leads them to a victory against the enemi

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  • Title: Where the Buffaloes Begin
  • Author: Olaf Baker Stephen Gammell
  • ISBN: 9780140505603
  • Page: 244
  • Format: Paperback
  • Follow Little Wolf to the fabled lake in the south where the buffaloes begin Watch the huge beasts surge out of the water and onto the prairie, as Little Wolf leads them to a victory against the enemies of his people A Caldecott Honor Book Illustrations in black and white.

    One thought on “Where the Buffaloes Begin”

    1. An engaging (even if at times frightening, ghostly) tale of how a young American Indian boy saves his tribe from their traditional enemies by calling the buffaloes from the place where according to legend they "begin" (and considering that the text was originally written by Olaf Baker in 1915, thus more than a century ago, the storyline is really for its time and place surprisingly respectful of Native American culture and lore). With evocative and atmospheric illustrations, it is easy to unders [...]

    2. Author: Olaf BakerIllustrator: Stephen GammellGenre: folk tale picture bookPublication Info: Puffin (1985)Reading Level: Ages 6-10; transitionalTopic/Theme: Native American folk loreIssues Addressed: origin of the buffalo Social Issues: Native American CultureClassroom Uses: read aloud during a unit on Native American history Summary: Little Wolf goes to the lake where the buffalo originate. When the buffaloes emerge from the lake, Little Wolf leads them to defeat the people who have come to att [...]

    3. This is an enthralling book that traverses the open prairie at a time when majestic buffalo roamed in great numbers, sharing the land with only the American Indians. Ten-year-old Little Wolf is riveted by the mysterious legend of the animals' origins, as recounted by Nawa, the wise man, "who had lived such countless moons that not even the oldest member of the tribe could remember a time when Nawa was not old." Nawa says that if you "arrived at the right time, on the right night, you will see th [...]

    4. Little Wolf is fascinated by Nawa’s story about the buffaloes and how they are born. The Buffaloes are said to be born in the lake in the south of the land. One night, Little Wolf leaves his sleeping village to travel to the lake to see the buffalo being born. When he sees them, he lets out a cry, which alarms the herd. They stampede toward Little Wolf, but not to attack. On his pony, he rides with the buffalo and finds that his village is being attacked by their enemy, the Assiniboins. The As [...]

    5. I really enjoyed reading this book. I found it to be very interesting and the illustrations were magnificent. The book was illustrated in pencil, and Gammell really captured the scenes being described throughout the story. This book made you feel like you were Little Wolf, the main character, which is something I really enjoy (being able to relate to the main character.) The story line is so intriguing and gets off to a good start by giving background information on Little Wolf's tribe and their [...]

    6. Filled with beautiful black and white pencil drawings and a story about courage and self mastery, Where The Buffalo Begin is wonderful story to have both at home and the in class room. The story begins with Nawa, the wise man who's the oldest member of the tribe, as he tells his people about the legend of where the buffaloes begin.This is such a wonderful story about Little Wolf, a fearless 10 year old who has dreams about the great Buffaloes. Like his dreams, he wants to see if the legend that [...]

    7. Olaf Baker arrived in the U.S. in his thirties and went west spending time with the Indians. This was around 1900. He wrote many tales from traditional Indian stories.Stephen Gammell did the drawings with pencil giving them the flavor or that time period. The story has a dreamlike quality and the softness of the pencil drawings reflects this well.Little Wolf has often heard the buffaloes begin in the large lake far to the south. His dearest desire is to see them rise from the waters. Early one m [...]

    8. I will say that I probably wouldn't have ever discovered this book had it not been for my Caldecott Challenge. This book won a 1982 Caldecott Honor and rightly so for it is a marvelous book. The book features a legend about a young Native American boy named Little Wolf who is determined to find out if the buffaloes really do come out of a lake, like the wise man says they do. He waits all day and eventually he does see them. They are not afraid of him or he of they, and they help him to save his [...]

    9. 10 year old Little Wolf is intrigued by the story his tribe’s Nawa (wise man) tells of the lake where the buffalo begin. He sets out on his pony in the grey dawn to find this place. Stephen Gammell’s fine pencil art draw you into the story with misty details evoking the dreamlike tone of the story while Olaf Baker’s concise narrative catches the very essence of the sights and sounds of the prairie. One legend is born out of another when Little Wolf’s quest results in finding the buffalo [...]

    10. The illustrations for this book immediately caught my attention, I couldn't help but be enamored by the black and white drawings. As I read through the story though, I found my attention wavering and couldn't really appreciate the book. I'm still not sure how I feel about the nature of this story or if it is really all that appropriate for children, elements of it were violent in a simplistic manner so that the youngest of minds wouldn't catch exactly what was going on. This is not a book I'm pl [...]

    11. I think this is the first book I've read illustrated by Gammell that isn't Scary Stories to Tell in the Dark and his art is no less effective in communicating the atmosphere of the story. Everyone knows, of course, that Gammell's SSTTITD illustrations are the only ones that matter, no disrespect to Helquist. This book speaks of a different time in picture books, when black and white illustrations were more common and where older kids still read them. It's a shame there aren't many like this arou [...]

    12. The black and white illustrations are far better than the story for me. They are wispy and mysterious like clouds of imagination. I especially liked the scene where the buffaloes are coming out of the water. Their shapes were mostly undefined, but the more you looked at it the clearer the picture became which made me feel like I was seeing it in person. The story was long and didn't match the intensity of the art for me. Worth looking at, but I suggest paging through and telling yourself the sto [...]

    13. I didn't expect to like this one as much a I did. The picture on the front cover does not do justice to the illustrations inside! They are powerful in how they add to the story.This is a picture book that works better for older children. The text is longer than your typical picture book and there is some violence. But as I said, I did enjoy this one more than I expected - mostly due to the fabulous Caldecott honor black and white drawings by Stephen Gammell.

    14. Gammell's amazing pencil illustrations just glow - the prairie, tipis, the faces, the haze and clouds, the pensive faces - and evoke much feeling while leaving much of the white pages empty. The storyline is the tale of Little Wolf who finds the lake where the buffaloes begin, sees them rise and eventually saves his own people in the Great Plains.

    15. I can definitely understand why these illustrations were recognized by a Caldecott committee. They are full of intriguing shadows, and they have an almost haunting quality. The story, on the other hand, is a bit wordy. This book and The Girl Who Loved Wild Horses seem very similar to me. This might be related to the fact that they were published only three years apart.

    16. Caldecott Honor story book. A telling of a Native American legend, though not clear if it is an authentic one. It reads old, so it was surprising to see that it was from the early 80s. But apparently the writing was from 1915. The art is black and white, either pencils or charcoal. The story has its dark and violent elements. But works rather well. A lot of words for a Caldecott though.

    17. I didn't like this book when I first read it. I was 9. It wasn't the story that I didn't like. It was the eerie illustrations. It is illustrated by Stephen Gammell, the same guy who illustrated the Scary Stories to Tell In the Dark series. Very creepy. But I learned to appreciate the illustrations and how they fit in with the text itself.

    18. Listen to the story of the fable great lake where the buffaloes begin. Little Wolf sets out to find the great lake,as he sets out he still thinks about the enemies of people and how he may be ambushed on his journey. The tale turns into a victory for Little Wolf and his tribe. Love the black and white pictures and it is a great read for 4th grade on.

    19. I found this in a book of short stories that I was reading. It is a great story. I would recommend it to teachers/parents of younger children (8 and up) or anyone that enjoys reading about American Indians.

    20. I wish I had a better printing of this book. The original art is probably much more engaging. Daytime in the prairies can be so light, so bright, and yet everything is very muted in this printing. The dark gray colors aren't inviting to young viewers. I wish there had been an author's note.

    21. My little girl picked this out for me at the thrift store today, and tonight we sat down and read it together. Since I love buffalo and I love reading it was a good match. The illustrations are my favorite part!

    22. Caldecott Honor 1982The pencil drawings show the power of the buffalo. This was a great book to read on our Yellowstone vacation. I saw bison almost every day.

    23. I loved this book. The artwork was amazing, absolutely beautiful! I love learning about American Indian history. This story is fascinating and exciting.

    24. • 1982 Caldecott Honor Book •I didn't know anything about this book when I started reading it. It had a really old time feel to it, and some of the words were unusual and the sentence structure seemed rather lengthy for children. Well, when I got to the end of the book, it said this story was published in 1915. So that explains that. I had a hard time getting through this story. I thought it was awkwardly worded, but I did like the story overall. The illustrations are fantastic. But I'm not [...]

    25. 1982 Caldecott Honor - Favorite Illustration: the full page illustration of Little Wolf astride his pony as they finally make their descent into the valley of the southern lake.A beautifully illustrated tale of a young boy and his inspired journey to see the lake where, legend has it, buffaloes begin. I really enjoyed reading this Native American myth of Little Wolf and how he saved his people. I loved the gorgeous illustrations by Gammell, and the beauty and respect that both contributors inclu [...]

    26. The text for this story is nearly 100 years old (it was originally published in St. Nicholas Magazine), and I think is partly why it feels a little "much" for a picture book. I'm used to shorter texts. That being said, this is a great choice for older listeners--maybe 3rd-4th grade and up. The illustrations are marvelous, but a little ghostly in feel (appropriate, though, since this is a legend!). One particularly effective page is when Little Wolf is on his journey and the text says he doesn't [...]

    27. Reading Level: Middle SchoolGenre: Historical FictionReview: This is a Caldecott Honor book, although the illustrations are minimal when compared to the text. The illustrations are truly beautiful, haunting even. The story could also be used to compel an older child to learn about Native American history. This book would add diversity to a collection of historical fiction, while contributing to Native American-themed literature for older children.

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