Thursday, August 26, 2010

Journal entry #5 – Legacy continues

I just had a thought: What if students are asked to determine whether events –big events -- have left legacies or not?  This is related to my last journal entry where I’m finding lots of great books about people involved in changing situations, yet the books are often not explicit about people being driven by the idea of leaving a legacy.

In pursuing the idea of legacy on the internet, I saw how the word ‘legacy’ is commonly seen as “a given”, that a big event does indeed leave a legacy.  But is this always true or just an easy, trite cliché? Is there only one legacy or how many?  Is it always apparent as to what the legacy is? Is this something linear or more tangential?

I’m thinking about the book like Hitler Youth: Growing up in Hitler’s Shadow by Susan Bartoletti, which is a fantastic compelling look at how the Nazis trained young people into following fascist thinking. Was there a legacy from this early indoctrination? What is/was it?

A more contemporary scenario is the US and 9/11.  Lots of great books to support looking at this event like September roses by Jeanette Winter (823 W7338S PIC BK) or  Ask me no questions by Marina Tamar Budhos (823 B859A FIC) (this is recommended for grades 7 and up but because Nellie McClung Elementary School has in past years selected materials above grade level, I will suggest this item to them.) But what is the legacy of this occasion (besides more airport security)?  Is it different for the individual compared to society? When does a legacy become apparent?  Is it too soon to determine?

Would students be able to follow through on this? Could they discover the connections between the past and the present and determine for themselves what legacies have been left from the Hitler Youth or 9/11?

Lots to think about, but great critical thinking possibilities.


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