The Turtle Story, a Native American Account of Earthquakes

5min 52s Novice

Storytelling has been around for many generations and it has been a crucial part of sustaining and passing down sacred Indigenous knowledge and traditions. Through stories like this, children are able to establish a connection to their surroundings and in turn understand the importance of being stewards of the natural world. This video also helps to alleviate the fear of earthquakes that many people, especially children, may experience, and introduces the actions that people can take to protect themselves.


  • It was thought long ago that the Creator chose to place earth on the top of Turtles’ backs.
  • The Turtles could not agree to stay in one place, so they went in separate directions and thus the reason for earthquakes or “shakeouts.”
  • When this shaking occurs, “Drop, Cover, and Hold On,” are important words to remember that will keep everyone safe.