Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Dogs With Gold Collars

First off, to all the parents and students who read this blog and discuss social studies - a huge thank you!  It's nice to see your grades going up, but it's also nice to believe you're thinking about this stuff outside of the classroom.

If you are turning this in for credit, make sure that you put your (student) name on it as well as the parent signature.  I've had quite a few turned in recently with no name or hour.

A beautiful chaos of learning: that's what class was today.  We played a game from the History Alive curriculum.  It was based on Ghana's salt-gold trade.  We spent a little more time reading about Ghana first - how rich and powerful it was... yeah, the king even had guard dogs with gold collars.  The students all drew and labeled three quick pictures depicting this after the reading.  Then discussed them and went to play the game.  The game took a little bit of time to explain - which I knew it would - so we're playing again tomorrow.  HOORAY FOR SOCIAL STUDIES GAMES!  We won't get to play the whole time - we'll have to debrief.  I'll tell you tomorrow how it goes.

In order to get the extra credit for the blog today, students have to read it and discuss it with an adult in their household.  Students, today I want you to discuss how the game was played.  Explain the different groups - salt miners, salt traders, Ghana's taxation officials, and the gold traders.  Give the rules of the game, and the group you were in.  Explain why you had to crawl...  You get the idea...

When you're finished, write the following phrase on a piece of paper: "The king's nephew is heir to the throne."

Finally, have the adult that you read and discussed the blog with sign the scrap paper with the quote.

Parents/Adults: Don't forget that by signing the paper you're saying you discussed this stuff with whoever is turning in the paper.  ...Please don't sign unless you discuss this stuff.  Also, make sure it has your kid's name on it too.

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