Increasingly activists are becoming filmmakers because video is the modern essay - traveling further than pamphlets by Patrick Henry, showing people in action fighting for freedom - or, in this case, free education in Chile, tends to cause change. Fascinating read and case study.
"Roberto’s son Pablo, born and raised in the UK, has worked on several documentaries on Latin America. He produced the documentary ‘Inside the Revolution: A Journey Into the Heart of Venezuela’, released in August 2009 by Alborada Films, and ‘The Colombia Connection’, released in November 2012. He has covered Latin America for various media outlets, including Al Jazeera English, the Guardian and the BBC.
I spoke to Pablo about their forthcoming documentary on Chile’s student movement and their crowdfunding campaign."
An overview from the New York Times predicting the future between Mayor Elect Bill de Blasio and the United Federation of Teachers which represents 40% of the city's workforce. For those following politics in the US, this is a situation to watch.
Pakistan is pushing to educate more of its children, amidst financial woes and a struggle for more funding. Their goal: 100% enrollment. Of course, there is a great effort also to build a firewall in Pakistan much like the "great firewall of China." That said, there are many lovely educators from Pakistan who contribute and connect increasingly online and I wish this country well as well as the many countries working to increase enrollment.
"As schools returned to session in Pakistan’s northwestern Khyber Pakhtunkhwa (KP) province this fall, the newly elected provincial government – with the help of the non-profit campaign Alif Ailaan - launched an enrollment drive. In its first month, the drive managed to enroll nearly 245,000 out of school children – about 65% male and 35% female - across 25 districts of the province, according to figures provided by Alif Ailaan. But considering Pakistan’s education woes, where more than 25 million children between the ages of 5-16 remain out of school, it is a small step.
“In order to provide schooling to all the kids, we need about Rs. 138 billion (roughly $1.2 billion) just in KP - for school infrastructure, classrooms, teachers so on and so forth,” Joudat Ayaz, the province’s education secretary, told me over dinner. Ayaz estimates the number of out of school children in KP between 2 to 3 million, about 20% to 30% of the school-age children in the province. “You can’t do this [reaching 100% enrollment] in one go – you have to do it progressively, over six or seven years.”"
Education is an issue around the world as demonstrated in this video from New South Wales Premier Barry O'Farrell. They have problems with "reneged deals with Federal and State governments." Education is in flux the world over, lest any one group of educators feel they are being singled out. This is largely caused by the information age. While the industrial age changed how people worked, the information age is fundamentally changing how people learn and those organizations that can adapt and progress will remain. Some towns suffered the loss of factories but kept their schools. What happens when the schools close? Integrate technology, blend learning, or the tightening finances world wide will make it hard for you to thrive in an education landscape increasingly mixed with education technology.
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After ever debate, even though I have a computer class, we use word clouds to discuss the debate results and deconstruct what happened. We discuss important words missing, etc. and also look at social media. This is a great context for discussion - I just tell students, however, that our job is to deconstruct and analyze not to debate who is our "favorite" and why.
Mark Phillips from Edutopia calls for a "political bootcamp" for kids to understand how the process works. It can be done with a teacher who understands the difference between sharing their own views and requiring an agreement with those views to get a good grade or avoid denigration. Those in authority in schools must be careful to respect all students and their viewpoints. We need discernment an wisdom in such tumultuous times, however, our ability to disagree in a civil way is paramount to our future.
This next political issue is over a bus driver arguing with a CHILD over a yard sign and telling the child that the child "should have been aborted" Just be aware of the times of the season and the appropriateness of how adults should interact with children. (If I see any relating to such things with Obama, I'll be sure to share, it just seems the two in my feed are related to Romney.)
Whatever your political views, students have a right to theirs. Do not make fun of a student or their family's political choice. While the media isn't biased, teachers aren't either, however, you may be biased but your students have a right to their opinions as well. Please be sensitive during political season, especially if you are an activist, to know that you show students what good, effective political discourse can look like -- even if our politicians and media do not.
The New York Times has some options to allow students to participate and learn from the US Presidential debates. If you're teaching and you are wanting to use this as a topic, this is a great lesson plan.
Another reason to make YouTube available. Richard Bryne from Free Tech for Teachers shares about the new YouTube channel that will cover the US presidential election. Bookmark and share, especially if you have a current events class.
Union politics heat up in Chicago where the teachers, upset over increased hours without increased pay, may strike. Expect such tensions to increase. Unfortunately all such things take our eye off of students where they should be.
Sports often reflect the politics of the day. If you're delving into Euro 2012, have students discuss why Princes William and Harry are boycotting games against the Ukraine. Because of human rights violations, specifically the treatment of opposition leader Yulia Tymoshenko, has others in Europe upset at the Ukraine over their perceived oppression. This is an article to get to started.
Here are some lesson plans on the European Union, its formation and the current euro crisis.
As you talk about current events, you should include discussions about the European Union but also about the particular happenings in Greece. Greece could run out of money in 6 weeks unless a coalition government is formed soon. Many citizens don't want to slash budgets but the facts are that banks are in banking to make money and won't just extend loans based on goodwill anymore. Here are some lessons and resources to use to discuss Greece and have some very interesting conversations about credit and financial responsibility.
This New York Times lesson plan is a great way to get students started talking about if they were president. Although from back in August, this is a great place to respond or to start your discussions about this topic.
If your students are studying the French election, here are some resources, videos, and other information to discuss what has just happened in France with Socialist Francois Hollande winning over incumbent President Nicolas Sarkozy. (One note, Hollande is promising a 75% income tax for the richest!) Use these resources to make this current event relevant. (High school social studies teachers, this is the kind of thing important in your classrooms.)
Controversy in the Uk as they move to performance based pay (which - if you watch the Dan Pink Ted Talk about this topic, you'll find DOESN'T WORK). It seems some discussions move from country to country without understanding if they really work.
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