A short reflection on the Holocaust

Recently in the History Society I asked students what they would like to study. A huge amount of students asked to study World Wars and in particular the Holocaust. The reason for this was the promotion and coverage of the Holocaust Memorial Day on the news and over social media.

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The amount of coverage of the Memorial Day is noble as it does raise the hope that mistakes made can ensure people are aware of the injustices that occurred in history, and not to be repeated again.

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However, despite this report it does well to view recent FBI reports that it is the Jewish community that still the most persecuted religious community in America (reported attacks). To realise and hear that the Jewish community is still being persecuted despite the atrocities committed against the Jewish community highlights how we may not be learning from our past mistakes.

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When teaching about World Wars or the Holocaust it is important to remember that there is still injustices occurring the world despites our best attempts

History – Document, Source and Picture Question

Documents, source and picture questions are a key part of any History class and exam. With the mocks right around the corner it is good to remember how to look at a picture in a historical sense.

Study the pictures carefully:  

Don’t just glance at them. Have a look at what they are, and look at the details, you might be asked a question about one of them.

Read the questions carefully:

If you’re asked to give two pieces of information, don’t just give one. If you’re asked to give one piece of information, don’t waste your time giving more.
Timekeeping:

The Picture Questions are worth 15 marks altogether. They can be an easy source for marks, but you must not spend too much time on them. Other parts of the paper carry much more marks with them. You should spend only about 10 minutes on the Picture Question.

  • Primary/ Secondary Source
  • Biased
  • Prejudiced
  • What event is it referring to?
  • What’s happening in the background?
  • Who is in the picture

A few examples which you can use to sharpen the students and it should help with revision with the Cold War Topic.

In this British cartoon from 1948, Stalin watches as the storks fly coal and food into Berlin, but he dares not shoot them down.

 

Web 2.0 – History Hub

http://historyhub.ie/

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Another great history resource is History Hub.

History Hub is a great resource for senior cycle history and even an undergraduate standards.

It has excellent resources for Junior and Leaving Certificate history and with the 1916 Rising coming up listening to Podcasts is an excellent way to engage students in the classroom and get them motivated in helping commemorate 1916.

Additionally, one feature of History Hub which I enjoyed is their From the Archives section of their website. More and more it’s noticeable that students are losing out on engaging with primary and secondary sources as we are teaching for an exam. Though true it’s great to be able to use primary sources from archives whereas possible.

(Images of the 1916 Rising aftermath)

Additionally,for T.Y. and senior cycle history students can use the website to get ideas for Research projects and topics.

Another simple fact about History Hub which makes it worth checking out is it’s updated regularly and they have a mailing list which you can subscribe to. I found this idea appealing as I sometimes forget what website I saw a great resource on but if I’m on their mailing list a quick search of emails usually turns up what I was looking for.

What would you do? Morals – LC example

Morals – What would you do?

What would you do  (WWYD) is an American newsmagazine and situational hidden camera television programme that has been broadcast on ABC since February 26, 2008. It is hosted by news correspondent John Quiñones.

The program features actors acting out scenes of conflict or illegal activity in public settings while hidden cameras videotape the scene, and the focus is on whether or not bystanders intervene, and how. Variations are also usually included, such as changing the genders, the races or the clothing of the actors performing the scene, to see if bystanders react differently. Quiñones appears at the end of each scenario to interview bystanders and witnesses about their reactions.

As the experiment goes on, psychology professors, teachers, or club members watch and discuss the video with Quiñones, explaining and making inferences on the bystanders’ reactions.

How does this tie into Morals?

First of all look at the Definition of Morals: concerned with or relating to human behaviour, especially the distinction between good and bad or right and wrong behaviour: moral sense. 2. adhering to conventionally accepted standards of conduct. 3. based on a sense of right and wrong according to conscience: moral courage, moral law.

How does this relate to the Leaving Certificate Curriculum aims?

What would you do ties into these LC Religious Education aims:

  • The general aim of education is to contribute towards the development of all aspects of the individual, including aesthetic, creative, critical, cultural, emotional, expressive, intellectual, for personal and home life, for working life, for living in the community and for leisure.
  • Additionally, it also ties into All Leaving Certificate programmes, in contributing to a high quality education, emphasise the importance of : self-directed learning and independent thought, a spirit of inquiry, critical thinking, problem solving, self-reliance, initiative and enterprise, preparation for further education, for adult and working life and lifelong learning

as it promotes students to become aware of the global world in which they are living in today and how they interact with the world around them is done through Morals.

Also, WWYD raises topical and current issues which are in the media which the students can relate to. This can promote critical thinking and engaging responses from students on topics which require personal language in an everyday situation. (Ties into to examine some understandings of ‘morality’ and the implication of these understandings for personal decision-making and to identify the elements and context of a moral decision.)

Why use WWYD in the classroom in regards to Technology (Web 2.0 Tool)

WWYD is a viewed by the students through a web 2.0 tool – YouTube. This is incorporating and expanding students minds as to how they view short clips online – social online awareness.

Additionally, it highlights critical thinking and moral judgement to students to never judge a book by its cover either – as it’s revealed that each scenario those in the video are witnesses to are set up so to speak.

Few examples of WWYD clips available on their youtube channel.


Resources to go with this video!

http://www.dailystar.co.uk/news/latest-news/336468/Scammers-sell-3-pregnancy-kits-online

http://www.naturalnews.com/045174_pregnancy_tests_women_relationships.html

http://www.alternet.org/latest-troubling-internet-trend-selling-positive-pregnancy-tests

This is a video which most students can relate to if you can break it down and ask can you think of a time you didn’t have enough money for something.

Would you let someone go without baby food.

Embracing the christmas time – WWYD – similar topic to the previous video.

 

21classes

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Just finished a presentation on 21classes this week!

Will post our reaction and overall impression of 21classes!

For those curious what 21classes is and the suspense of an updated post is too much. Please feel free to check out the website: https://www.21classes.com/


Recently we were asked to do a presentation on the web 2.0 technology platform 21classes.com.

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Though over 40,000 users are using 21classes (which a huge percentile being for educational purposes) overall the research from our group and using of 21classes has prompted us to think it may be a good blogging platform but there is better out there.


 

That being said there were positives to 21classes.

  • One of the main reasons why people would use 21classes had to be the privacy settings and spam protection which is ideal.
  • Additionally, another huge benefit of 21classes is that your students do not need an email account to sign up. However, these features only become apparent after you have paid the monthly fee. Though it is a small amount at 8.95 a month per class and 33.98 for unlimited amount to one teacher – it does have huge drawbacks.

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  • From researching active 21classes blogs I noticed that I could access student’s works which was a huge benefit if I was a relative or friend who wanted to see what they are doing in class. Also, it would be a reflective way for students to engage with each other and possibly motivate students as to how much work they need to do.
  • Drawback as students can see each other’s work – which could lead to plagiarism – which would be distressing to students who put a huge amount of work into their work and will lose confidence if they feel their own work will not be private and at the scrutiny of their peers.
  • However, one huge benefit of 21classes for the students is that they can upload and personalise the 21classes page to their own liking. Though this is a great feature – this feature is available on other blogs and is more accessible to do.
  • Following the slides below you can see how difficult was to upload. If you have the time and resources 21classes was good.
  • Though 21classes says they offer a blogging community run and controlled by a teacher students can still change the security settings without the teacher noticing which we thought was a huge drawback.