Thursday, November 4, 2010

Course Description: A Focus on the Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Found at

This focus on human rights is part of a year-long focus on World Literature and students' personal beliefs. The project that the students are working on is called the Personal Creed Project, which ties in nicely with an intense focus on human rights around the world.

The basic premise of The Personal Creed Project, developed by John Creger, is that students work to define and refine their beliefs by thinking about and reacting to the characters (fictional and nonfictional) that they meet in their studies. So far, we have read one book about the Jewish Holocaust, several articles about human rights abuses around the world, and a short story from a collection of stories put together by Amnesty International.

Sample Personal Creed Video (Not a student in my class, but a project I'll show to my students.)

One of the first large projects that we're working on is in conjunction with Lisa Dalrymple's Spanish classes. In our combined efforts, we're going to create materials to help promote and celebrate International Human Rights Day, which is December 10th. For this project, we are studying the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, which was developed in 1948 to protect the people of the world from atrocities like the ones that occurred during WWII.

To lead up to this important day, students are working to create promotional materials to hang up around the school. So far, students in my sophomore English class have selected two articles (there are thirty in total) and have created posters. Also, they have studied the elections in Myanmar and compared/ contrasted those elections to our own in the US. Here is a student sample blog post about this topic:

Student Sample Post 

 Here are some of the posters that students have created to post around our school:

We are in the beginning stages of this project, but it's off to a great start. Students are invested and interested in this project and are full of ideas and passion. Already, one sophomore said, "So is this year all going to connect and everything we do going to relate to what we did before?"

The answer is yes.

Here are some of the areas that will be assessed in this unit. They are taken from a cultural literacy rubric developed the by the Metiri Group. This is their definition of a "Globally Aware Student". They are recognized as:

·         being aware of how technology links nations and individuals, as well as how it enables the global economy.
·         understanding the interconnectedness of the global economy.

·         being aware of how the global economy impacts political decision-making – including the formal and informal pacts nations enter into.

·         being aware of the social, environmental, and micro-economic impacts of global decisions made by both national and international (e.g. the U.N., the I.M.F.) organizations.

·         understanding how cultural differences (e.g. beliefs, traditions, religions) impact personal and national participation at the global level.

·         understanding the impact of ideology and culture on national decisions about access to and use of technology.

·         participating in the global society through interactions with persons in another country or culture.

Here are the categories under which students will be assessed this year (there will be others, but these relate to global citizenship and social justice):

That's it so far. It's definitely a WIP (Work In Progress)... Any thoughts?

And, this is just extra. But it's really good. And, we're going to make a video using our static pics. But this video is better and is super inspiring.


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