Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Natural Disasters

The news yesterday of Christchurch's earthquake was devastating. That it happened in the middle of the day when most people were in the city, working or at lunch, has just added to the heartache.

As we tend to do when big things happen, I will always remember where I was. As I was thinking about how I feel about it and where I was I realised exactly how selfish I was. I guess it is in our nature to relate others experiences to our own, but my task for today has been to get my students to think outside themselves.

I think English is great for a task like this. Teens are really at the most selfish age, so getting them to think from other peoples points of view is actually a tough task sometimes. The only idea I have come up with so far is a writing activity where they have to write from the point of view of someone completely different from them. What challenges might they face, what values and beliefs they hold, what type of experiences they would have been through.

I am welcoming any other ideas that people might have about how to tackle this. My aim is to create greater empathy amongst my students.

This blog has been a bit all over the place, but hopefully you get my drift :)

1 comment:

  1. Hi Ms M - good thoughts. I kind of came at it from the other angle - using my personal reaction to think about how we are all affected by this disaster. (See my blog #56 Teach Twenty.)
    Have just had the uncanny experience of hearing complete silence descend on the shrieking playground and L block corridor in the middle of lunch - they really did all stop and observe the 2 minute silence.
    Kia ora from 'Ms W'.