Friday, July 25, 2008

Thursday, July 24, 2008

I couldn't resist this story!

As I searched NPR for more project ideas to include on the blog, I stopped in my tracks when I saw the word "Nirvana." Hey, I admit, I can't get past the early 90s! Anyway, if you need a break, you might enjoy this story.
More Nirvana on NPR:
"Smells Like Teen Spirit" - NPR:

Changing the Rules of Engagement

Watch Frontline "Changing the Rules of Engagement":
Related Links:
Interactive Map - "The Toll of War" Civilian and Military Casualties:
"Collateral Damage or Civilian Massacre in Haditha?" Time Magazine Story:,9171,1174682,00.html
Lesson Plan "The Human Costs of War" New York Times:
Project Suggestion # 1: Click on the link above (The Human Cost of War) and scroll down to "Extension Activities." Go to #1. Post your answers in the comments section. In your comments, first answer the questions relating to the War in Vietnam then answer the questions focusing on the War in Iraq. (See me for clarification if needed.)

A final note about this project suggestion: You need to spend some time watching part or all of the Frontline episode linked above. You may also want to spend some time on the "Analysis" link.

Project Suggestion #2: Watch all or part of Frontline's "Changing the Rules of Engagement." Read the Time Magazine article linked above entitled, "Collateral Damage or Civilian Massacre in Haditha." Share your thoughts in the comments section.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Darfur (Video and Project Suggestions)

Sudan (Fast Facts)
Student Video (Darfur)
Frontline: "On Our Watch"
Resources (In depth coverage, analysis, links)
What you can do:
United States Holocaust Memorial Museum:
Enough Project:
Save Darfur:
Sign the Petition:
Human Rights Watch:
Amnesty International:

Project Suggestion #1: 
In your comment, briefly discuss your feelings on the following question:

Why do you think it is taking so long for the world to take significant action in Darfur?

How have the following responded to the crisis in Darfur?
- The United States government
- Private individuals and organizations

Share your reaction to the "60 Minutes" segment and any additional videos you watched on the topic.

Now that you are more informed about the issue, what do you plan to do?

Project Suggestion #2
You may watch all or part of the Frontline special, "On Our Watch" and complete the handout linked below.
Watch "On Our Watch"

Tuesday, July 22, 2008


Several of you have expressed interest in learning more about LGBT issues. Considering current events is an important part of this course and the fact that several of you are interested in this issue, I thought I'd share this story.

Young, Gay and Murdered (In last week's Newsweek):

Related Posts (including project suggestions):

This is the book I was thinking of....

The book: Intern: A Doctor's Initiation.

As I sat there listening to NPR one afternoon, I immediately thought of you future doctors -you know who you are! I thought, "this sounds like a pretty good book!" Callers to the program who had read the book said it was a hilariously accurate portrayal of life as a medical intern.

For those of you thinking of law, I'd suggest One L: The Turbulent True Story of a First Year at Harvard Law School by Scott Turow.

Dr. Juahar's site:
NPR stories:

This is so cool!

A 639 year-long concert?
More on "As Slow As Possible"
PBS American Masters:

Free Tuition! Are you kidding me?

From today's New York Times:
Berea College:

Monday, July 21, 2008

Get Involved!

Many of you have expressed an interest in learning more about volunteer opportunities relating to some of the issues we've explored this summer in History Recovery (children's rights, tolerance, ending poverty, women's rights, peace, etc.) Here are a few links to get you started:

Longitude Volunteer Opportunities
Fight Poverty:
CNN Impact Your World:
CNN Heroes:
Doctors without Borders working to end childhood malnutrition:

Friday, July 18, 2008

Global Food Crisis

60 Minutes Story:

Doctors without Borders
Map (Malnutrition "Hot Spots")
NYT Opinion Piece

Washington Post coverage of the issue including videos:
Project Suggestion: Read a story and watch a video. What is the issue? What is being done? What are the obstacles to progress? What are you going to do now that you are aware of the issue?

Maternal Mortality

As the world marked International Women’s Day on March 8th, international agency Oxfam highlights the shocking conditions for millions of women giving birth. In sub-Saharan Africa for instance, they still face a one in sixteen chance of dying in pregnancy or childbirth. Niger, one of the poorest countries in Africa, is the most dangerous place to give birth with women facing an astonishing one in seven chance of dying.

More on the issue of maternal mortality:

How can you help?
More statistics:
The risk of a woman dying as a result of pregnancy or childbirth during her lifetime is about 1 in 8 in Afghanistan and Sierra Leone compared with fewer than 1 in 17,400 in Sweden.

Most maternal deaths (61 per cent) take place during labour, delivery or in the immediate post-partum period. Some 3.4 million newborns die within the first week of life.

Main sources for this page were The Lancet's Maternal Survival Series (2006), the 2005 World Health Report: Make Every Mother and Child Count (WHO), and WHO/UNICEF/UNFPA maternal mortality estimates from 2000.

Blood Diamond

Past posts pertaining to the movie "Blood Diamond":
(For credit, you may click on the link below and answer the questions in the post.)
(For credit, answer the "Comprehension Questions" or the "Discussion Activity Questions.")
"Adbusting" Project - Create an "Adbusters" style poster focusing on the issue of conflict diamonds. See the link below for more detail on "adbusting," project requirements and more resources on the issue of conflict diamonds.
Similar Project Ideas:
Visit this link for samples of "Adbuster" posters on the issue of conflict diamonds:
Important: If you choose to answer questions from one of these past blog posts, post your comments in the comments section here.
Resources: BBC - Information on Children in Crisis including Child Soldiers:
History Channel - "Blood Diamond" (MANY useful resources):
Another Project Suggestion:
Visit the links below. Comment on Beah's experiences as a child soldier.
A Long Way Gone - The true story of a child soldier:
Multimedia Clips - A Long Way Gone:
Youtube Video - Ishmael Beah:

Lessons and Resources on the Web about the film:
Kanye West Video: "Diamonds from Sierra Leone"

Photojournalism and War

Very powerful Washington Post story (iconic images from the War in Iraq, PTSD... includes slideshow)
Editorial - NYT:
Talk of the Nation link (scroll down to "An Arresting Image"):

Project Suggestion: Read and comment on the story. (Those of you who watched "Born on the Fourth of July" may want to do this assignment. Many of the topics dealt with in the film and subsequent discussion questions tie in well with the story above. In addition, those of you who completed projects dealing with photojournalism and the Vietnam War may also be interested in reading and commenting on this story.)

Time Magazine story:,8599,1811858,00.html
"Born on the Fourth of July" post (many similar stories can be found here):

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Why do so many kids hate history?

Lies My Teacher Told Me
Read the Introduction to Loewen's book and tell me what you think.
CNN story - Controversy over Columbus:
Read the story and tell me what you think. Do you agree with Loewen or Buchanan?
Zinn discusses and Matt Damon Reads from, A People's History of the Twentieth Century:
This is pretty cool:
Listen to Loewen - Lies in History Part I:
Lies in History Part II:
Listen and comment for credit.
James Loewen Videos:

Watch and comment for credit.
If you don't see the video, click here to watch:

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Who is this?

Posted by Picasa

Pearl Harbor

Looking for sites relating to Pearl Harbor? Here are a few sites I thought I'd share with you.

Have you seen this site? It looks really good.


Lesson Plan:

More on Land Mines

UNICEF estimates that 30-40 % of all landmine victims are children under the age of 15. Mines kill and mutilate 8,000 to 10,000 children each year.
View a powerful PSA here, under "Quick Links" on the right-hand side (Right-click to watch full-screen version):
International Campaign to Ban Landmines:
What can you do about this issue?
Sign a Petition:
Additional Resources:
Landmine Awareness Activities:
Project Suggestion: Research a mine-affected country. How extensive is the problem of land mines in this country? What is being done? What could you do to make a difference?

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Plastic Island

What the heck is plastic island?
Several links with additional information about "plastic island":


Project suggestion: First, explain what "Plastic Island" is with other readers. Second, were you able to find any information regarding what can be done about "Plastic Island." If so, explain what it is and what you may or may not do about the issue.

Monday, July 14, 2008

The Joy of Summer!

RATM- Sleep Now in the Fire

Some of you are interested in looking at music lyrics that contain references to historic events. One song several people have expressed interest in is Rage Against the Machine's "Sleep Now in the Fire."
After reading the lyrics and listening to the song(you may choose another song as well) post your comment here. In your comment, you may want to discuss which historic events or references are made in the song. You may also want to discuss the overall message of the song and/or the "tone" of the song. (What does the song mean? What if anything, does the artist or group hope to achieve by writing and performing this song?)

Another song kids have analyzed in the past is Flipsyde's "U.S. History."
Past posts dealing with music and history:

Thursday, July 10, 2008

More Project Ideas

Many of you completed the "Hidden History: Images in Action" activity and asked if I knew of similar activities. I'll provide links to a few activities that are similar in style or content:
Learn more about kids around the world:

Teenage Refugees:

Child Soldiers:

Landmines in Cambodia:

Darfur (student video, "Projections")

Responding to Genocide (Podcasts and Blogs) THIS SITE LOOKS EXCELLENT...I plan to spend a lot of time looking at this site.

Facing History and Ourselves: Be the Change

I have other links on the blog relating to this activity, here is one:

Project suggestion:
Some of the sites above are lesson plans, others are activities such as videos you can watch, podcasts you can listen to or stories and/or slide shows you can read/view. If no specific instructions are provided in the lesson or activity, you may earn credit by posting comments under this post. In your comment, tell me which site you looked at? What was the topic you explored in the site? Why did you choose this particular site over another? What did you learn from this site? What do you plan to do with the information you learned? (Do you plan to share this information with anyone else? Do you plan to learn more about this topic? What else could you do with this information?)

Today's Film: Schindler's List

Project suggestion (answer one of these questions from the Teacher's Guide linked above)
Schindler risked his life in order to save Jews. It was a time when terror reigned. The Jews had been dehumanized in non-Jewish eyes by Nazi propaganda and brutality. Tom Keneally, the author of the book Schindler's List, quotes Schindler as having said that "A life is not worth a pack of cigarettes." Yet Schindler risked his own life. Why?
In the film, Schindler and his mistress witness a brutal Action in the Krakow ghetto. Amidst the mass of forsaken humanity, Schindler observes a wandering Jewish girl dressed in a red coat. This is one of the four occasions in the otherwise black and white film in which color is used. In the book, Keneally writes that the sight of the child in red "compelled Schindler's interest because it made a statement." What is the statement? Why does Spielberg, the film's director, employ the use of color? Discuss the occasions in which color appears in the film.
Although Schindler's List does not directly address this issue, the question is an important one. Many people assume that the Jews went to their death "like sheep to the slaughter." In fact, the Jews resisted in many ways. As Holocaust survivor Elie Wiesel has said, "The question is not why all the Jews did not fight, but how so many of them did. Tormented, beaten, starved, where did they find the strength, spiritual and physical, to resist?"

Photojournalism in the Vietnam War

Photojournalism and the Vietnam War

Media coverage of the war expanded and played a role in shaping public attitudes toward the war.

A high school student is quoted as saying, "To show a photograph of one naked girl crying after she had been napalmed changes the entire meaning of the war to a high school student." From, Lies My Teacher Told Me

Project Idea: Choose four images from the Vietnam War linked below. Answer the following questions:
1. What is depicted in the photographs?
2. How does this photograph make you feel?
3. Do you think these photographs are too graphic to be printed in a newspaper? Why or why not?
4. Do you think these photographs add to or detract from the news stories they accompany?

If you are interested in focusing on the impact of photojournalism during the Vietnam War, the links below contain images and relevant information.

The Effects of Photojournalism on the Protest Movement During the Vietnam War
Vietnam's Most Harrowing Photo: From Guilt to Grace

Some of you are interested in photojournalism but would like to study it within a different historical context. I have lessons on photojournalism in the Great Depression and the Civil Rights Movement on my wikispace page.

NPR recently did a story on a new book on Dorothea Lange's work chronicling the Depression.
A story on the Japanese experience in internment camps told through photographs:

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

Global Food Crisis

Thank you for sharing this story.
For those of you who haven't seen this story, follow this link and share your feelings.
Christian Science Monitor story:
Time Magazine story:,8599,1717572,00.html
Other links of interest (I highly recommend both of these stories):
Time Magazine Photo Gallery (What the World Eats),29307,1626519,00.html
More on the book "What the World Eats:"
"What the World Eats" discussed in NY Times blog:
"Blessings in a Backpack"
Save the Children:
The Hunger Site:
Ending Hunger blog post:

Tuesday, July 8, 2008


I've had a few students ask for recommendations with regard to Vietnam War films. Personally, my preferences are "Born on the Fourth of July" and "Platoon." I'll provide Wikipedia and other links here so you can learn more about these films. After you've done your research and you decide to view one of these films, let me know. Perhaps we can work together on coming up with a project to go along with one of the films.

"Platoon" (Wikipedia):
Other links:
Washington Post review:
Interview with Oliver Stone (He discusses both "Born on the Fourth of July" and "Platoon.")
PBS American Experience - Vietnam

"Born on the Fourth of July" (Wikipedia)

Monday, July 7, 2008

July Session - First Day Assignment

Before you leave today, you need to let me know what theme/topic you are going to focus on for the next day or two. You may post your comment here. In addition, you need to let me know how you spent your time. Did you visit some of my post blog posts? If so, which ones did you find particularly interesting? Did you find any project suggestions that appeal to you? If so, which one(s)?

If you are struggling coming up with topics/themes, visit the wikispace page or see me for Mr. Theide's binder. I have copies of the U.S. History and World History textbooks as well. You can spend some time looking through the textbooks or skimming the Table of Contents for topic suggestions.

If you posted a comment under an older post, let me know so I can give you credit.

Wikispace page:

I mentioned the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in one of my comments. Here is the link:
Online exhibits:

History Channel "1968" Documentary link (MUSIC):

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Sometimes we need to put things into perspective...

Sometimes, when things seem overwhelming you come across something that really grabs you...forces you to put things into perspective. The video I've linked below is one of those things. Another reminder that for many of us, we have a lot to be grateful for.

July Session - History Recovery

Summer School July Session History Recovery begins July 7. Class will meet Monday through Friday, 8:30-1:00 (includes bathroom and lunch break).

Most of the information regarding course requirements, projects, etc. can be found on the wikispace page under "U.S. History Recovery." World History Recovery information can be found here as well.

You will post Unit/Theme choices, beginning and ending dates, questions and comments here. (This is required. After you complete each Unit/Theme, I will post a comment verifying completion of your project. Parents/guardians/Guidance, etc. will be able to track your progress by checking the comments section of this blog post.)

Before you post comments, you must register with Blogger. On the first day of class we will do this. Everyone must do this. If you do not have an email address, we will set one up for you. Once you register, DO NOT forget your user name or password! Your user name is your email address. You cannot retrieve forgotten passwords from school computers. Finally, when you are asked to type your display name, DO NOT type in your first and last name. Type your last name and the letters "U.S." or "W" for U.S. History Recovery or World History Recovery.

For most of you, the majority of your work will be done online either on the blog or class wikispace page. For searches, I've included a wikipedia search tool at the bottom of the page. I'd like all of you to view the video embedded below so you will develop a better understanding of wikipedia.

CNN: Special Investigations Unit: The Noose -American Nightmare

We watched this documentary in Psychology last semester as part of our Social Psychology unit. Jena 6 is dealt with quite extensively in the video. If you are unfamiliar with the Jena 6 story, visit the links below:

Spend some time looking at the interactive map showing "noose-related" incidents across the United States.
Interactive Map:
Hate Symbols:

The CNN site includes a lot of information about the Jena 6 incident as well as similar stories:
Project Suggestion: After watching the video and viewing the site linked above, post your comments here. In your comment, you may want to discuss what the noose means to you. Do you think it is a symbol of hate? Why or why not? How would you respond to those who considered the hanging of a noose in a tree in front of the Jena High School a "prank." (What is a "prank"?)
Lessons from the Teaching Tolerance site: