Creating Student Upstanders in Today’s World

Posted by Mary Hendra on August 2, 2015

Whether you’re a parent, teacher, student, or not currently involved with formal education, what can you do to foster an attitude of standing up to injustice?

Join educators from the Learn+Teach+Share blog this month in exploring together the steps and strategies that can help students recognize their voice and agency in today’s world.

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Topics: Choosing to Participate, CLTV, Upstander

One Of Us? Or One Of Them?

Posted by Guest Blogger on May 13, 2015

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Topics: Civil Rights Movement, Choosing to Participate, Bullying, Critical Thinking, Facing History PSA, Upstander, A View from the Classroom


Posted by Mary Hendra on April 28, 2015

Each year, we ask Facing History Partnership Schools in Los Angeles to identify those members of their community who have become 'upstanders' - the individuals and groups who shape their community by speaking up on behalf of others and standing up to injustice small or large. On Thursday, we will celebrate our 2015 Upstanders and we are proud to share their stories as inspiration for us all.

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Topics: Student Work, Upstander, Community Event

Civic Engagement in a Digital Age

Posted by Daniel Braunfeld on April 22, 2015

My children will come of age in an era of easy digital access, of school districts across the country exploring one-to-one computing, and their hometown deciding that students have the right to bring personal cell phones and electronics into schools. So, like many other parents of digital natives, I wonder how they will harness and utilize the power of this global access. How will they navigate the myriad of behaviors, distractions, and opportunities that the digital landscape provides? How will they define their digital Universe of Obligation and, as digital natives, will they be digital bystanders or digital upstanders?

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Topics: Choosing to Participate, Social and Emotional Learning, Upstander, Using Technology

Why We Love Monsters

Posted by Stephanie Carrillo on October 28, 2014

As Halloween draws near, representations of ghosts, goblins, and vampires saturate the seasonal displays. Given the success of various Halloween events at local theme parks, it's clear that there is no shortage of people who want to be frightened. For a fee, we can go to a haunted house or staged zombie apocalypse, and experience the thrill of controlled panic.

I can't help but ask myself, "Why would we want to surround ourselves with these images? What is our fascination with monsters?"

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Topics: Holocaust and Human Behavior, Social and Emotional Learning, Upstander

Student Agency, Student Voice, and the Maker Movement

Posted by Mary Hendra on October 23, 2014

As October is Connected Educator Month, we are pleased to announce our partnership with Educator Innovator! Educator Innovator, powered by the National Writing Project, provides an online "meet-up" for educators who are re-imagining learning. Educator Innovator is both a blog and a growing community of educators, partners and supporters. We know we're with the right partner, because in this month focused on "Connected Education," the theme chosen by Educator Innovator as its key focus is:

Student Agency, Student Voice, and the Maker Movement

"Powerful learning occurs when youth, driven by their own interests, are supported in being creators and not just consumers of knowledge." We agree. And, it makes me think of the story behind a young group of "makers" we worked with several years ago.

I love the project, too, but the story behind it is so special to me!

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Topics: Choosing to Participate, Bullying, Student Work, Upstander, Using Technology, Tech Innovation

Upstanders: Strengthening School Community

Posted by Armen Menechyan on October 15, 2014

On October 11, 2014 at the Robert F. Kennedy Community Schools Campus, more than 15 schools and upwards of 120 students, teachers, parents, and administrators took the time on a Saturday to come together with one common goal: Strengthening school community.

Facing History Los Angeles hosted our 3rd Annual Los Angeles Partnership School Summit on School Culture. In our first year of this summit, we featured the film BULLY and looked at how small steps can make a difference for peers confronting bullying on campus. Last year we considered a short animated film from StoryCorps, Listening Is An Act of Love, to grow beyond just stopping bullying and consider how to build a positive school culture by small acts of compassion. This year, we continued to explore ways to build a stronger community by considering the steps of an "upstander."

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Topics: Safe Schools, Los Angeles, Urban Education, Upstander, Community Event, Parents

A Local Civil Rights Leader: Mayor Tom Bradley

Posted by Mary Hendra on August 26, 2014

Mayor Tom Bradley. His name is given to a number of buildings around the city – the international terminal at LAX being perhaps the most prominent. But, did you know…

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Topics: Civil Rights Movement, Los Angeles, Upstander

"Remember the Ladies"

Posted by Stephanie Carrillo on July 18, 2014

When I taught U.S. history, early in the semester my students were required to read and discuss Abigail Adams' letter dated March 31, 1776 to her husband John. In it, Adams asks that her husband not forget about women's rights while fighting for America's independence from Great Britain. She wrote,

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Topics: Civil Rights Movement, Choosing to Participate, Teaching, Critical Thinking, Upstander

Teaching Kitty Genovese: The Importance of Complexity and the Perils of the Single Narrative

Posted by Brian Gibbs on May 21, 2014

I’d taught the story of Kitty Genovese for years and thought I’d read all there was to read on it. I was convinced that I knew the story. It had touched me deeply, shocked me, and moved me. Perhaps that was the problem, I had become far too comfortable with an uncomfortable story, and stopped exploring, asking, questioning. For an old man it was a rookie mistake and one that I’d unfortunately made every year for 16 years.

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Topics: Choosing to Participate, Teaching, Critical Thinking, Bystander, Upstander, Teaching Strategy, A View from the Classroom

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This blog helps Southern California teachers connect directly with each other, share ideas, and learn about new resources and opportunities for those interested in or already implementing Facing History.

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