The Power of Propaganda: In History and Today
Appropriate for social studies, English language arts and religious school classes (15-40 students);
Grades 6-12; Approximately an hour.
The goal of this session is to help students think critically and analyze media in the context of literary works, social sciences and current events. Carol will begin with a brief slideshow and text excerpts from her novel, Heroines of the Kitchen Table to present history through the eyes of women who defied Hitler and struggled to save their loved ones. The message of fear and loss touched everyone. But how did Hitler come to power, from where did this evil arise? Why didn’t people do something to stop him? These questions will provide the context for discussing propaganda, stereotyping, intolerance, and hatred.
The second part of the session will focus on the importance of propaganda starting with name calling, and describing other types. Students will be encouraged to come up examples of their own. Current items from the media will be presented for analysis and discussion.
Skills: Evaluating information from diverse formats and the media; Determining the validity of sources, the reasoning and sufficiency of evidence to justify conclusions. Understanding lessons from history.
CCSS-ELA-Literacy in History/Social Sciences
Anchor Standards for Reading (Grades 6 – 12) Integration of Knowledge and Ideas: Standards 7. and 8.
2010, pages 34, 38, 60 (http://www.corestandards.org/assets/CCSSI_ELA Standards.pd
Stop Bullying: Step into the Victim’s Shoes
Appropriate for classes in grades 4 through 9. (Approximately 1 hour)
This presentation begins with defining bullying. Then it draws on the author’s book, Gym Class Klutz, and takes students back to incidents from the 1960s where Kenda is bullied. An interactive discussion follows, which examines the reasons kids pick on her. Then students are engaged in an activity where they are assigned labels and they are asked to react to their own and another’s stereotype. The goal of this exercise is to sow the seeds of understanding, empathy and compassion. A few examples of Kenda’s story tell how understanding, even a little of what it’s like in the other person’s shoes, can be a deterrent to bullying. It leaves students thinking about these questions. What does it feel like to be bullied? How can I help? What’s the difference between a bystander and an upstander?
Curriculum Connection: (SEL) Develops Social and Emotional skills
Groups of 20-40 students