You can see an overview of our Grade 10 interdisciplinary unit on Human and Civil rights here.
We headed off the wonderful Center for Civil and Human Rights. We were granted access before the museum opened to the public, and had booked the function room for afternoon activities.
Our first activity was run by our wonderful theatre teachers, Mr Bell and Ms Weeks. They had students move around the space, then would randomly call out 'get into a group of 4' or 'get into a group of 8', then they would give them a word to physicalize. These words included; Social Conflict, Violation, Privilege, Human Rights, Exploitation, Moral Principles, Segregation, Freedom of Expression/Thought, Justice and Humiliation. These words would be used later in the day too!
The rest of the morning included a tour from Ted Ward from the center. I can not speak highly enough about him - he had a wonderful way with the students and really told them stories that they connected to. I had briefly mentioned to him through email that they were looking at human and civil rights around the world, and we wanted them to look at a range of different perspectives - he knew exactly what I meant, and highlighted stories of everything from Latino to LGBTQ activists.
I spent most of the time in the function room setting up for the afternoon, but was able to see him talking to the students about the Aids Memorial Quilt and joined them for the end of the tour. If you are a school in the south east, I cannot recommend this tour and center enough! Get there now!
After the tour, and after lunch, we looped back into the initial activity (physicalizing those words), by doing a PZ activity called Making Meaning:
After this group activity, we set up different activities at every table. Students would all start off at one time and would spend around 20 minutes there. We would then let them know to move tables. They did not rotate, but could choose where they moved each time. We had 11 tables, each with an activity, and we had some spare activities we swapped out at times too - meaning that all students would not make it to all activities. As we gave them a little summary of the activities at the start, they could move to the tables that interested them most.
Here are a description of some of the activities - along with some photos.
This is America.
This station at two parts. One had questions about the Childish Gambino Video This is America. The next part had students answer "what does the phrase 'this is America' mean to you?"
The next table, manned by Ilse Ortega, had students look at three different Amnesty International Posters. We had questions translated into German, Spanish and English for each poster. This table worked well, as it had a teacher leading the discussion. We could have separated the activities by languages, or had students respond to them silently, (Chalk Talk style)! Here and the questions and translations.
Apples to Apples and Pictionary!
Tim McMahon planned two tables, which were set out as games. One was a spin on the classic American game, Apples to Apples, where students would read out the description from a card from a deck of civil rights activists! They would then use the regular Apple to Apple cards to find a matching word! We also had students use white boards to play Pictionary, where they would draw our a human right and have the other students guess it. This was a great way to get students to familiarize themselves with different rights.
I stole this idea directly from the Atlanta History Center! Students had copies of the American citizen test, in Spanish and English, which they could turn into poems. If we do an activity like this next year, I think the language and literature teachers will choose different articles, in different languages for our students to use!
The main reason for bringing the students to the museum and doing these activities was really to give them lots of different human and civil rights to think about, as well as exposures to violations around the world! As well as to get them to think about the importance of images in telling stories! By the end od the day, I am sure they were all prepared for Day Two!