New week, new topic. This week: Native Americans. I really needed some activities this week which would make the students work without me hanging over their shoulders. I had promised them discussions in smaller groups this week (more discussion on Obama's inaugural address), and I could therefore not be in the classroom with the others all day. My solution was to provide various sources on Native Americans and to ask each student to make a glogster on a topic related to Native Americans. Returning to the classroom after approximately one hour, I found all the students busy creating their own digital posters; they were eager to share ideas about how to make interesting posters with pictures, text and videos, and asked for more time because it was funny. Running out of time and wanting to spend some time on factual texts and literature, too, I have therefore asked them to finish their glogsters at home and to publish them on their blogs. If you want to have a look at some of the results, you can visit Henrik and Caroline's blogs.
Working on Native Americans, we have also used a couple of text which we found on the internet. "The end of the Native American way of life" is a text from the BBC pages and tells about how the US government defeated the Indians, whereas in "Native American Voices" you can read about indigenous peoples in all parts of America.
I find it useful to use short stories or extracts from novels when teaching the various topics. This time we plan to use two short stories by William P. Kinsella, "The Bottle Queen" and "Panache". In between parent-teacher meetings, correcting papers and fighting the flu, I have not managed to get around to all the details on how to use these stories yet. It probably will not be all that revolutionary anyway, but hopefully both stories will provide food for thought and discussions with the students. Time will show.