Friday, December 14, 2007

Thought Provoking Quote

"We must be the change we wish to see in the world."

-Mahatma Gandhi

Thursday, December 13, 2007

K's Project Link

Many of you were asking for a link to K's myspace page that he developed for his project. Here it is: Politically Controversial.

He has put a lot of work in to the site. He is constantly updating it to provide individuals with up to date and accurate information. Good work, K!!!!!

Problem Based Learning Project/Final

Yesterday, I gave you the guidelines to your final project. I was thrilled to see the level of excitement that the majority of you were expressing. I'm glad that you are getting into it. I wanted to post a brief overview on here, so that you may have a place to seek answers and post questions. Together we will get through this.

Questions: How can we work to insure that acts of intolerance no longer continue at Riverside High School, in WV, The US, or the world? In other words, what can we do to make a difference?

Overview: You and a partner will be responsible for researching an act of intolerance and the prevention of intolerance. This project will consist of more than just a one-sentence answer. By the end, you will have produced a multimedia presentation that takes the audience on the journey that you went on to find the answers to the questions and solve the problem.

This is not a project to promote intolerance. It is a project to help us understand and learn how to prevent such instances.

After watching 'Hotel Rwanda" many of you were impressed at how ONE person, Paul, was able to make such a difference by saving the lives of 1,200 people. Now is your chance to prove again that it only takes one person's actions to start a wave.

Exploration: You will explore different forms of intolerance that we see on a local and world-wide level. You will explore the history behind these acts, and the actions of the individuals involved. You will narrow your research to one particular act. This is the research based part of the project. Once you have thoroughly researched the act, it is your job to creatively find a solution or a way to education individuals to see that this no longer happens again. You are being asked to attempt to fix the problem.

The Journey: You will submit in writing a summary of your journey, from brainstorming to solution. You will provide detailed information as to what you researched, your findings, and eventually the solution. This summary will be typed and all material will be cited. Lessons on citations will come soon.

The Presentation: Power Point, Video, Computer Generated Pamphlet, etc. This is your chance to share your research with your classmates and the possibility to benefit from seeing their research findings. The same resource requirements apply to your presentation as it would if you were writing a typical research paper. Therefore, you will need to include a reference or work cited portion to your presentation.

-7-10 mins in length
-answers the question
-shows research

Graded on:
-completeness and length
-quality of information
-use of sources
-presentation skills
-works cited format
-minimum of 3 sources
-minimum of five citations
-works cited
-MLA/School Guidelines
-must have at least 2 non-electronic sources

Talk to each other to help generate ideas. Many of you already know the direction you are wanting to take. That's great! Any questions or comments, feel free to email me or post to the blog!

Friday, December 7, 2007

Hotel Rwanda

Yesterday, I gave a brief history introduction to the Rwandan genocide, you watched a behind the scenes documentary featuring Paul Rusesabagina, and you watched the first third of the Hotel Rwanda. Based on the history lesson, the documentary, and the movie you have a pretty clear idea that this tragedy was basically ignored by the rest of the world. The UN was only able to do so much. The US had trouble clarifying if genocide like behavior was to be considered a genocide. Nearly 1 million Rwandans were murdered and it was barely a blip on the radar of the world.

The photographer in the movie makes a statement in reference to what is happening in Rwanda and the footage that he took that day, "If people see this they’ll say ‘Oh my God. That’s horrible,' Then they'll go on eating their dinners.” Is this an accurate statement in terms of how people today react to current atrocities? Why? Why not?

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Hate Hits Home

Today in the Gazette and article was published stating that Pat McAfee, the WVU kicker, has been receiving death threats and his personal property has been vandalized for his lack of accuracy in the WVU-Pitt game. Honestly, what kind of a world are we living in when people are threatening a life and vandalizing personal property over a football game? For that matter, threatening a life and vandalizing personal property is never acceptable behavior. I am a die hard Mountie fan, but where does one draw the line?! It's absolutely absurd.

Can anyone draw any relation between what we have been talking about in class and this real world situation????

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Afternoon Thought

I didn't have an email account or really use the web that much until the middle of my undergraduate studies in college. Computers in schools were a BIG deal when I was in high school. It was virtually unheard of to have a PC in schools during my parents' tenure. Thinking about how much statewide, national, and global communication we now have, it makes it much easier to access, gather, research, and share data with millions of people in virtual seconds. In some respect it makes it much easier to find answers to questions, but it also makes a lot of the information that we find incredibly unreliable. (You all know how much I despise that w***pedia site.) It leads me to two questions:

1. Has the development of technology and means of global communication placed more of a spotlight on teaching tolerance?


2. What do you think tolerance education is like in other countries? For instance, how do you think the unit that we are finishing is perceived in Germany, Africa, Central America, etc.?


This blurb appeared in the 12/03/07 Gazette:

"Some history classes in northern England have stopped mentioning the Holocaust, on grounds that it offends Muslim students, whose families claim that the Nazi extermination of Jews never happened. Good grief."