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be the change

teacher, activist, global citizen


Edited By Rita Verma

This book examines the ways young people engage in action, dialogue, and activism, and how they become global citizens. The essays in the book illustrate how young people with deep convictions on how to change the world make a difference in their communities. The community becomes the classroom, and their activism the true lesson. Possible «utopias» are realized with every effort to engage in activism, to be an advocate for both oneself and others, and with each critical engagement with oppression. These young activists are the unsung heroes and theirs are the victories in current educational debates. Moving away from theoretical debates on multicultural and progressive education, this book illustrates how youth action, curriculum strategies and creative writing, service learning projects, advocacy work at community-based and grassroots organizations, and global initiatives can result in real-life victories.


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Part Two: Activism through Everyday Acts of Teaching 71


• P A R T T W O • Activism through Everyday Acts of Teaching • C H A P T E R S I X • Teaching Social Studies through an Empathetic Lens to Understand Human Conflict Nicole Lynne Bannick In order to understand the ways in which humans communicate, it is impor- tant to accept conflict as a piece of the communication process. When teach- ing, students should be aware that major turning points in history stem from misunderstandings based on differing cultural norms, varied conflict styles, and ethnocentrism. Inevitably, these factors contribute to intercultural mis- communication. Identifying with one’s own cultural norms, ideologies, and ethnocentric views provides a basis for understanding why society may act or not act in a particular way. Applying the basic understanding of human com- munication and why people behave the way they do to a social studies curricu- lum will assist students in interpreting historical interactions influenced by societal standards and ideologies of the time. Perhaps if we approach the teaching of social studies in a way that addresses the present in reflection of the past by making connections to the reasons why humans fight, students will understand history as a human process. Teachers play a role in engaging stu- dents on such processes. Students should be encouraged to understand the cultural differences that existed and still exist today between warring countries. Such differences contribute to the variations in conflict styles, and the process of conflict resolution. Students can understand history as a human process through...

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