Arab Culture through Literature and Film is a five unit high school curriculum that provides students with knowledge and tools toanalyze and understand the Arab world. The materials utilize a student-centered pedagogical approach that promotes critical thinking and respect and encourages engaged global citizenship. Through this curriculum, students will recognize shared themes across the region and gain a sense of the rich diversity inherent to the multidimensional cultures of the Arab world. Students will study life and culture in the Arab world and engage with primary sources including films, short stories, and poems. Exposing students to Arab voices and putting human faces on the Arab world will increase understanding and tolerance in the American classroom.
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Across the Arab world, kinship and familial association are cornerstones of society and the experience of every individual. Though each kin group functions in a unique way, there is a pervasive pattern of reliance on family networks regardless of religion, gender, ethnicity, or class. This unit explores concepts and structures of family in Arab societies from a variety of angles. Students will explore Jordanian customs and consider the values behind them and their relation to family. They will also hear from gay and lesbian Middle Easterners who reflect on their concepts of family and its impact on their coming-out processes. Students will read select short stories and poems and watch Ajami, a film in which the plot is fueled by character reactions to their families' needs. In the final lesson of this unit, students will synthesize all of the lessons above to create an Arab kinship themed version of Chutes and Ladders that demonstrates the role of kinship in setting and realizing individual goals.
This curriculum understands gender and gender roles as social constructs that are built, defined, and fulfilled on an individual and societal level. These roles are both an outcome of and rationale for appearance, behavior, and interactions of individuals and groups. Such concepts of gendered behavior are impacted by various factors including one's age, geographic location, social class, religion, marital status, and ethnicity. In this unit, students explore the dynamics of gender in the Arab world and consider their varied manifestations, perhaps challenging traditional notions of gender in the region. Students will explore the nuances of gendered interactions in public and private space and the pressures that gender expectations may place on individuals in the region. By engaging with texts and stories from the region, students will consider how those traditional expectations are negotiated and contested in a variety of ways.
The Arab world is a large and diverse region that spans from Morocco in the west, through the Levant, and the Arabian Peninsula. It includes twenty-three countries and represents a wide range of customs, traditions, and cultures. This unit frames the region through the lens of cultural unity and diversity, a concept essential to this curriculum. The historical and cultural background provided in this unit serves as a foundation for students to identify and understand the nuances and complexities of the region. Additionally, students are introduced to the primary tool used for cultural analysis of the Arab world throughout the curriculum, the culture as an iceberg metaphor.
Though the Arab world is broadly defined by a shared Arab ethnicity, there are actually a variety of ethnic groups in the region, many of whom are indigenous to the land. Each of these ethnic groups, including the Amazigh, the Bedouin, the Nubians, and the Kurds, has a unique history and culture and often their own language as well. Since the early years of Arab expansion, these indigenous groups have negotiated their acceptance and integration into the dominant Arab culture, at times adopting elements of the culture and at other times, rejecting it. This unit introduces students to ethnic groups in the Arab world and guides them through an understanding of their lived experience as minorities in the region. Students will consider the challenges that face specific ethnicities and explore how these groups negotiate their collective identity and membership in the region. Students will study the activity of Amazigh activists, read Kurdish poetry, and watch a documentary about the Nubians. They'll end the unit by conducting independent research on an ethnic minority of their choosing.
Religion permeates through the cultures and societies of the Arab world, manifesting itself in diverse ways. Its presence is seen at an institutional level as well as in personal behaviors and interactions including dress, daily routines, and patterns of speech. Although religion is ubiquitous, the way individuals understand and practice their religion varies widely. Furthermore, while Islam is the predominant religion of the region, religious sentiment pervades broadly and a host of other religions are practiced throughout the region. This unit guides students through an understanding of religion in the Arab world within its own cultural context. It challenges students to consider the complexities of religion and religious expression in a region in which its presence is unavoidable. This unit exposes students to diverse religious practices and expressions of Islam and the relationships between religious practitioners in the region.
The following artifact analysis worksheet was designed and developed by the Education Staff of the National Archives and Records Administration. You may find this worksheet useful as you introduce students to artifacts and primary sources of material culture, society and history.
This professional development article describes approaches to using social media in harnessing the power of Web 2.0 technologies to reinforce the connection between multimedia literacy and powerful content-area learning in grades K-5. The emphasis is on collaboration with the school librarian. The article appears in the free online magazine Beyond Weather and the Water Cycle, which is structured around the seven essential principles of the climate sciences.
- Arts and Humanities
- Material Type:
- Teaching/Learning Strategy
- Ohio State University
- Ohio State University College of Education and Human Ecology
- Provider Set:
- Beyond Weather and the Water Cycle
- Marcia Mardis
- Date Added:
The cartoon analysis worksheet was designed and developed by the Education Staff of the National Archives and Records Administration. This worksheet will be useful when introducing students to cartoons as sources of historical, social and cultural information.
This kit provides teachers and other educators with the materials and guidance to help fourth grade students understand the reasons that the British colonists elected to declare their independence from King George III between the years 1763-1776. As a part of these lessons students will be encouraged to consider the intent and impact of media documents from a variety of points of view including those of the colonists, King George, patriots, loyalists, slaves and Native Americans.
- Arts and Humanities
- U.S. History
- Material Type:
- Lesson Plan
- Primary Source
- Teaching/Learning Strategy
- Unit of Study
- Ithaca College
- Provider Set:
- Project Look Sharp
- Amy Eckley
- Andrea Volckmar
- Chris Sperry
- Karen Griffin
- Lynn VanDeWeert
- Rachel Coates
- Sox Sperry
- Whitney Bong
- Date Added:
This kit is a historical overview of American representations of chemicals from the three sisters to the Love Canal. It compares conflicting constructions about nuclear reactor safety, depleted uranium, Rachel Carson and DDT. Through analyzing diverse historic and contemporary media messages, students understand changing public knowledge, impressions and attitudes about chemicals in the environment.
The objectives of this kit are to improve student perceptions of older adults in terms of creativity, flexibility and competence, and to broaden their understanding of what constitutes "creative" expression. Both documentary and feature films were used in order to explore the differences in intent between these different media, as well as the issues of time period, race, gender, culture and nationality.
By looking at advertising and mass media critically, students begin to understand how the media oppresses certain groups, convinces people to purchase certain products, and influences culture.
By critically analyzing popular television programs, students develop an awareness of the messages that are portrayed through the media.
This kit provides teachers and other educators with the materials to help young children begin to understand the purpose of TV commercials (and advertising in general) in terms of selling intent, and to recognize the types of tricks that advertisers may use to make products look better than they really are. Specific lessons focus on foods groups and misleading nutritional messages commonly found in children's TV commercials, especially the "complete breakfast shot" and highly sugared pseudo-fruit snacks and beverages. Lessons are designed to address developmentally appropriate health standards, and many different commercials are provided so that children can discuss and practice what they have learned.
The Culturally Authentic Pictorial Lexicon provides CC licensed images for use in World Language classrooms and for developing your foreign language teaching materials .
Economics in U.S. History is comprised of seven lessons and is designed to introduce students to basic economic concepts through analyzing diverse perspectives on the subject. Students will be engaged in a dynamic, interactive, and constructivist process of exploring media representations of economic issues in U.S. history. Such issues include the free market, industrialization, and The Living Wage Campaign. The kit will teach students to identify the Ě_Ě_ÝlanguageĚ_Ě_ĺ of construction of different media forms and to analyze and evaluate the meaning of mediated messages about economics. This kit was designed for 8th grade U.S. history, but the document-decoding approach can be adapted for and used from middle school through high school.
Students use the 5 Ws (who, what, when, where, why, and how) to evaluate an information source and determine if they would cite it in a paper. This assignment is used as an information literacy exercise at the University of Tennessee Libraries, where students are given a New York Times column to read before completing the assignment in groups.
For a copy of this resource as it was originally given to students, go to: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B0vtrPDaeiV6VFJUYUNzRGlfb00/view?usp=sharing. Results of the use of this activity were shared in an article published in the journal Reference & User Services Quarterly 53, no. 4 (Summer 2014): 334-347.