Revolution to Reconstruction, America Through 8th Grade Eyes
My students need a quality camcorder.
This project expired on January 9, 2011.
Hooray! This project is fully funded
Have you ever been nervous when asked to speak to a group of people? Many of my students have those same feelings of anxiety when asked to debate an issue or present a project. Video recording helps students get over their fears because they can watch themself first and practice to improve.
My students are a culturally diverse collection of kids that are excited about learning when presented with challenges.
They especially excel at cooperative learning and the opportunities to make learning fun. They are also interested in making history important to their lives today. The skills they receive from such activities as performing a reenactment of the Dred Scott Trial and Civil War Ball help them learn that interacting with others is an important life skill. My students also are opinionated, however, they learned how much alike we all are when asked to write their own constitution for a fictional country. Much to their amazement, they all came up with a similar document to the U.S. Constitution, even before we studies it! This revelation helped students to gain a better understanding of not just our government, but more importantly, each other!
Through practice for a performance of the Dred Scott Trial, students will learn what a slave went through to just gain freedom. The video taping will not only allow for practice, but also review multiple times the importance of that trial on our country today. Through reenactments of Civil War battles, students will see first hand how the war split out country, pitting best friends against one another. Once again, the video taping will help students understand the meaning of sacrifice for what one believes is right. Today debates rage in our country over such issues as health care. By students doing the Lincoln-Douglas debates in front of the camera, they will learn how to stand up and let their voice be heard when they have a strong opinion, or want to become part of the solution to a problem.
I am diligent to ensure that my students understand my opening quote: "You do not know where you are going until you know where you have been!" Their understanding that history is just not some old, forgotten thing will help them become active, productive citizens in the years to come.
The ability to have a video camera daily in my classroom will allow me to take full advantage of "teachable moments" when students will understand the importance of history.
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