Monday, December 3, 2012

Syriously, Syria...

We're wrapping up the Arab Spring over here by looking at Syria.  As an American, it's difficult to try to make sense of what's going on.  We can only rely on the reports we get from the media.  When we hear numbers like 40,000 killed though - seriously, Syria.  Get it together.

Is there ever truly a winner in a Civil War?

We worked on language arts skills today too.  Social studies and language arts overlap a lot.  Obviously, students need to be able to read.  The problem is, if a student can't read - silent reading is of no benefit.  So, we practice reading out loud.  But then, we have students who are embarrassed to read - even the good readers.  As teachers, it is our job to help them overcome this.  I'm not sure that forcing them to read in front of the class before they are prepared helps them overcome their fears.  It may ingrain them.

So, we read in small groups today, and I think it went really well.

Students: if you want the extra credit for reading the blog with an adult, guess what: you have to read it and discuss it with an adult.

Discuss the following:
  • The article
  • What's going on in Syria
  • The different paths dictators took when confronted with rebellion
  • The difference between the following sentences
    • The dictator was afraid the people would rebel.
    • The dictator found someone he thought was a rebel and sent him to prison.
Then, write two sentences about the discussion, and have the adult you discussed it with sign the paper.  OOOHHHH!  Here's something extra I want to try: post it to facebook below.  If you saw the extra credit because of someone else's facebook post, write their name on your extra credit as well.  They will receive a prize or something for every person that turns in the extra credit with their name on it.

(Thank you Wikipedia... I'll probably be sending my donation any day now...)

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