Difficult conversations are a big part of my life. For almost nine years I’ve helped educators learn and teach about atrocities and injustices in the past and present. I should have felt prepared last year when asked to facilitate a webinar on "navigating difficult conversations" for classrooms in Baltimore City Public Schools. Instead I felt overwhelmed and hesitant.
In the aftermath of the mass shooting in Orlando, Florida, we are having difficult conversations all over the world. About race. About identity. About the meaning of democracy and where we go from here. Tanya Huelett shares what she learned from leading difficult conversations as a program associate at Facing History and Ourselves. These guiding principles can help us both in and out of the classroom as we all try to navigate this latest tragedy.
Difficult conversations are a big part of my life. For almost eight years I’ve helped educators learn and teach about atrocities and injustices in the past and present. I should have felt prepared when asked to facilitate a webinar on "navigating difficult conversations" for classrooms in Baltimore City Public Schools. Instead I felt overwhelmed and hesitant.
*This post was adapted from the Preface to the Second Edition of Salvaged Pages: Young Writers’ Diaries of the Holocaust.
When Salvaged Pages: Young Writers' Diaries of the Holocaust was published in 2002, I expected that it would have a typical life span, generating some interest for a while and then tapering off. And then, something unexpected happened. Teachers, organizers of educators’ conferences, and Jewish community leaders who organized local Holocaust education wanted me to show teachers how to use Salvaged Pages in the classroom, and how it could complement instruction on Anne Frank’s Diary of a Young Girl. Salvaged Pages gradually developed into an educational tool over the next decade.
For the past three years, Dr. Sybil Hampton has been featured as a guest speaker for Facing History and Ourselves’ online course, “Choices in Little Rock.” Her experience as one of the first African American students to graduate from Central High School in Little Rock, Arkansas in 1962 makes her a witness to history. She shares her reflections on why she chooses to participate in Facing History’s online professional development courses.
Register today! Our online courses start on February 4.
On May 12, Pulitzer Prize-winning journalist Sonia Nazario will join Facing History in Berkeley, California for a Community Conversation—one in a series of public talks held across the country in partnership with The Allstate Foundation.
Survivor testimonies—firsthand accounts from individuals who lived through genocide and other atrocities—help students more deeply appreciate and empathize with the human and inhuman dimensions of important moments in history. They supplement what we learn from historians and secondary sources by offering unique perspectives on the difficult and sometimes impossible situations individuals were forced to confront during moments of collective violence and injustice.
National Anti-Bullying Week takes place in the United Kingdom 17th to 21st of November. This year's theme is "let's stop bullying for all."
Topics: Classrooms, United Kingdom, Webinar, Online Tools, Professional Development, Film, Teaching Strategies, Bullying and Ostracism, Choosing to Participate, Human Behavior, Human Rights, Facing History Resources, Safe Schools, Teaching, Schools, Identity, Facing History and Ourselves, Teaching Resources
Recently, a class of graduate students at the Richard Stockton College of New Jersey visited me via Skype to discuss their reactions to Daniel Goldhagen's Worse than War and the accompanying documentary. They used the Facing History study guide, Genocide and Eliminationism, as a point of departure for their discussion. Since the session had the structure of the study guide and students had prepared papers on their reading of Worse than War, the class was incredibly interactive. I would remark on a passage in the book or a scene in the documentary and the students and professor (Dr. Carol Rittner) would respond. Then there were some free associations to the questions posed just as would happen face-to-face.