A Hope More Powerful Than The Sea

Posted by Liz Vogel on November 21, 2018

 

Our second Book Cafe is coming up on Sunday, December 2, 1-3 PM featuring A Hope More Powerful Than The Sea: The Journey of Doaa Al Zamel. RSVP by emailing me at liz_vogel@facinghistory.org.

"Nervously they waited to board. Doaa shifted from foot to foot in the long line to get through customs. Hamudi clutched his mother's arm, while Saja and Nawara sat on their suitcases, standing only to shuffle forward whenever the line moved. It felt as if every part of the journey were about waiting. Jordanian customs officials seemed to be singling out Syrians for security searches, and Doaa's family was asked to come forward with their luggage, while a group of Egyptian travelers were waved through. Doaa lifted her suitcase onto the table in front of the customs officers. When they unzipped her luggage, she looked at what she had hastily selected in the overwhelmingly emotional last hours at home: two dresses, a couple of pairs of pants, two blazers, a few skirts, several veils, and a few accessories. She stared at the meager contents of her suitcase and thought of the books she had left behind because they were too heavy - one about dream interpretation, a few novels, poetry by Nizar Qabbani, and a workbook on English grammar. She pictured her small teddy bear that lit up and made a kissing sound when she squeezed it, and her fashion sketches of clothes she dreamed of wearing in a future she no longer had." (from Chapter 4, Life as a Refugee)

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Topics: Book, Refugees, Refugee Crisis

Today’s News, Tomorrow’s History: Ending Veteran Homelessness

Posted by Monica Brady-Myerov on November 12, 2018

Today’s News, Tomorrow’s History is an ongoing series with Listenwise. This series connects Facing History’s themes with today’s current events using public radio to guide and facilitate discussions around the social issues of our time. This is part of a special California series with Listenwise where we make connections to issues as they are particularly relevant for Californians.

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Topics: current events, Listenwise

Purposeful Telling: Memory to Action

Posted by Celina Martinez on November 5, 2018

“Humanity is a complex idea. On one level, it simply means being human. On another level, however, it means being humane. What is the difference? Justice.”

Katherine McPhie, Grade 10 University High School, Irvine, CA

Facing History congratulates Chapman University and the 1939 Society for their 20th Anniversary of the Annual Art & Writing Contest! We have been a long-term partner with Chapman University in bringing this history and rich learning experience to students world-wide. The Chapman Art and Writing Contest has been instrumental in bringing the voices of Holocaust survivors and rescuers to inspire the learning and artistic expression of countless Facing History students.

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Topics: Contests, Choosing to Participate, Memory, Survivor Testimony

Exploring Current Events with a SEL Lens

Posted by Mary Hendra on November 1, 2018

“I have learned two lessons in my life: first, there are no sufficient literary, psychological, or historical answers to human tragedy, only moral ones. Second, just as despair can come to one another only from other human beings, hope, too, can be given to one only by other human beings.” ― Elie Wiesel

Last week, we held our second of three webinars in our fall series with Listenwise, this one focused on exploring current events with an attention to Social-Emotional Learning. With the violence that has happened since then, most visibly in Kentucky and Pittsburgh, I find myself this week turning to the words of Elie Wiesel.

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Topics: SEL, current events

Exploring the Role of Allies in Confronting Injustice

Posted by Gayle Cole on October 31, 2018

Every year, Facing History Los Angeles convenes our partnership schools for a summit on school culture. Students, parents, teachers, and administrators consider key ideas in how to create a more compassionate, engaged school community that can delve together into the critical issues of our times.

Our October 2018 Summit on School Culture focused on the role of allies in seeing and standing up against injustice, beginning with the documentary And Then They Came for Us. This film clearly activated the intellectual rigor, emotional engagement, and ethical reflection of our pedagogical triangle for the students, teachers and parents in attendance. Whether you attended the event or not, this film, accessible for free on our web site, offers you a timely resource for promoting engaged citizenship and dialogue in your community.

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Topics: Film

Prevent Bullying with Empathy-Building

Posted by Mary Hendra on October 1, 2018

October is National Bullying Prevention Month, and the kick-off of our webinar series with Listenwise.  In the first of our webinars, we share resources from Listenwise and Facing History which can help you have conversations about bullying with the young people in your life and build empathy in classrooms.

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Voices of Literacy Student Creative Writing Contest

Posted by Celina Martinez on September 25, 2018

The California Association of Teachers of English (CATE) is presenting its annual Student Creative Writing Contest. This year’s theme, Voices of Literacy: In Pursuit of Human Rights, echoes the themes at work in Facing History classrooms. We encourage our Facing History teachers to inspire students to produce original works by the deadline of November 1, 2018 based on the following prompt:

When we read about or interact with people with various perspectives, we learn more about our society and our world. Write a poem, story, or essay that shows how our world is made better when we understand the voices of many different people.

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Topics: Essay Contest

Listenwise and Facing History LA

Posted by Mary Hendra on September 19, 2018

How is your listening these days? What do you enjoy listening to?

I love listening to podcasts and audio books, though I can't say I'm always the most attentive listener. Sometimes I listen while "multi-tasking," occasionally perking up for an interesting point. Other times I find myself so engrossed in the listen, I can't help but stop everything else. Years ago I started listening to Tony Morrison read Beloved as background to doing housework - 5 hours later I was sitting on the couch still listening, as the sun set and my house remained a total mess.

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Facing History Book Cafe

Posted by Liz Vogel on September 17, 2018

You may be familiar with the Japanese word tsundoku, a noun that describes a person who buys books but never reads them, and then lets them pile up everywhere.
 
I can relate!  My reading list grows almost daily. I'm drawn, more than ever, to books that can help make meaning of the world around me. It's no surprise that I gravitate to stories tied to the big questions that Facing History examines: identity and belonging, we and they, racial justice, civic engagement.
 
That's why this year I'm piloting a Facing History Book Cafe, to help me read some of the incredible books I've stacked up in my home and office! Every other month, I'll host a bookclub conversation in a private home, open to teachers, students, donors, community members and friends. I've chosen a selection of books (see below) from a variety of genres - YA fiction, memoir, historical nonfiction and social commentary. 
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Looking Back to Move Forward: The Legacy of Reconstruction

Posted by Jason David on September 13, 2018

I recently facilitated a workshop in San Diego on the Reconstruction Era; it was a wonderful experience engaging with educators looking to teach US history through the lens of “identity and agency.” There was, of course, so much more I wish we could have covered about this  “unfinished revolution;” this pivotal period in US history, that in some sense, “never ended,” as historian Eric Foner describes it.

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Topics: Reconstruction

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