Can anyone please explain how I can teach about slavery to High School age students in creative way?

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There have been a couple of queries about slavery, and I'm pretty sure it hasn't been discussed in CR 2.0 before, but let me point you in some directions. Science Leadership Academy in Philadelphia uses Moodle for their students learning system, and they have book discussions--one of the books they discuss is Octavia Butlers "Kindred." A blog, wiki, or social network to encourage discussion of the topic would certainly be engaging. You could look to have them do original research now that there are so many resources on the web.
Hi funny how this subject has popped up here twice today, check out the other thread

You know what I would do?

I'd try what Jane Elliot did many years ago, the blue eyed/brown eyed experiment. Same thing in essence.....If you need more info.on this google. A must for educators to know about. Also, you can download the videos, they are in the public domain. I've them on my video section at Here's the first.

Do the experiment, structure it and then show the videos and get them to react in some fashion. I think pbs has some lesson plans on it.


I had never seen this documentary, and couldn't stop watching--although I was squirming in my chair several times.

Glad you "enjoyed" it. The very best of so many great educational materials. She is as much a hero as MLK jr or Mandela or Lincoln......

I found the OER Commons link with discussion questions and info. to more lesson materials.
Free download of the interview with her also. That's amazing!
Hi David,
You know...that's a great idea! Thanks for the suggestion. I am so awful at checking this you can tell :). Thanks again!

Hi Nick, I've been working on a project called "The Plantation Letters" that provides primary source documents from the antebellum period, to teach students about the life of underrepresented persons on southern plantations--slaves, women, and children. We're just getting started on a rather large digitization undertaking, but the goal is to include lessons that involve students in analyzing the documents through various web 2.0 tools. For example, using Google Maps to recreate travel modes/routes as extracted from details in letters, using Google Docs to write short pieces of historical fiction based on facts extracted from letters, etc. We have a Ning with a few preliminary lesson ideas. I would love to hear your thoughts about merging web 2.0 tools with primary source documents in our collection or others. Footnote and Voicethread are other tools of interest in terms of students annotating/reflecting on specific letters.
Hi Kevin,
Thanks for this suggestion! I haven't been great about checking Classroom 2.0 but wow I like this idea! Would you want to maybe discuss how this went for you more? I would like to see how I can use this idea in more than just slavery. Thanks again for positing this!!

So many times , when studying slavery, we only focus on one tiny time period, slavery in the United States of America. Slavery has a long and ongoing history because it is still occurring all over the world, right now.

I favor the methodology of the wonderful teacher, Jan Eliot, and I definitely agree with an earlier comment that her work discussed in documentaries and other venues is worth studying and using as part of a program to end the causes of slavery.

Because most research discovers that the basis for all slavery is control of another individual through rankism that is reinforced by the abuse of "pulling rank" through official or unofficial ownership. Robert Fuller, former president of Oberlin University, details the ideas of exploitation, the source of slavery, that he calls rankism in books, and interviews. An excellent animation made for by Mike Stanfill explains how it even works in every day life.

It seems to me that teachers should focus more on recognizing one of the critical characteristics of slavery, controlling people's movement. It is difficult to control someone if they can get up and leave.

There are many historical and contemporary examples from all over the world. Some of the better known historical instances of culturally accepted rankism, slavery; included Greek, Roman, Dark Ages, and Middle Ages. Even during the 19th century, in some Scandinavian states; people were enslaved or indentured through the use of controlling where people could live, move and work. Some might not call this slavery, but if I was forced by the government not to move from the area of the farm where I was born until I was 45, I would consider that slavery.
You already have some good ideas from other commenters. I would surely use the primary source documents found at the Library of Congress and The National Archives as well as places like

We did an indepth study of the Titanic this year and used Mnemograph to do a comprehensive timeline. This program allows for multiple users simultaneously adding information. You can see our Titanic timeline here
.....and BTW have to ever seen this? In The First Person I just ran into it at Historytech



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