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Grade 6 'Global Forum' current events class....feedback needed please....


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Hi gang,

 

DD has Global Forum class 3x/wk and loves it.  Do you think I'm asking too much to get a list of discussion topics?  Yes, dd tells us after school but I'd rather get specifics from teacher directly.

 

Thoughts???

 

Thanks!

 

------------------------------------------------------------------

 

Dear Miss___,

 

Do you have a list of topics that you will be discussing in Global Forum? If it isn't too much work, we would like a list of the topics and details you discussed and/or plan to discuss each class period.  

 

A came home last week with some 'facts' about the student protests in Colorado that we disagree with.  She had a simplistic view of the situation based on the brief classroom discussion. It is my opinion that the local teacher union in Jefferson County used the student protesters as pawns in the midst of their teacher contract/pay negotiations.  The teachers planned a 'sick out' so students could protest, thus making national news. We corrected her that it is not as simple as 'the school board only wants the students to study good history of the country and not the bad history'.  (A's words)  

 

I'm not exactly sure what was said in your classroom discussion, so forgive me if I'm getting an incomplete summary from A.  

 

We watched this: http://video.foxnews.com/v/3812223728001/review-of-ap-history-curriculum-in-colorado-sparks-protests-/?playlist_id=2694949841001#sp=show-clips

and read this: http://www.forbes.com/sites/michaelhumphrey/2014/09/25/colorado-student-protests-and-the-clanging-internet/

 

The issue of how history and current events are presented in the classroom via state curriculum and/or Common Core is a polarizing topic because people interpret those historical events differently. This video summarizes how my husband and I plan to teach our kids.  The good, bad & ugly of US history.   

http://www.dineshdsouza.com/movies/america/

 

Re climate change and how it affects the California drought, she seemed to come away from your conversation today that 'global warming' is better to use than 'climate change' because warming is 'more exciting'. We don't want her using the term 'global warming' as that is not accurate. She will be using 'climate change' in her article.  

http://www.forbes.com/sites/peterferrara/2013/05/26/to-the-horror-of-global-warming-alarmists-global-cooling-is-here/

 

We are thrilled that A is in a current events class at such a young age and that you are so eager to teach these important topics. We just want to be informed of the topics so we can discuss intelligently at home as well and perhaps offer other viewpoints to the discussion. Perhaps you note them on Canvas and I couldn't find them.

 

A LOVES your class and we're thankful she has this opportunity. :)

 

Thank you!

Beth

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I think if I were the teacher, I would be put off by your letter.

 

If what you want is to get a list of topics, I'd leave out your views on the situation in Colorado, the embedded video, and your statements about global warming/climate change.

 

I'd probably write something like this:

 

Dear Miss ______,

 

A is really enjoying your current events class, and some of the topics have become the subject of discussions at home. We are thrilled that A is in a current events class at such a young age and that you are so eager to teach these important topics.

 

Would it be possible to get a list of the topics you discuss each week so we can continue our exploration and discussion at home?

 

Thank you!

 

I also wouldn't assume that every idea your daughter takes away from this class comes from the teacher. Kids of this age can be very passionate about these topics, and I know my own kids express views in public that differ quite a bit from mine.

 

 

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Just received the sweetest phone call from this teacher, thanking me for taking such a strong interest in this GF class.  She wishes all GF students and parents discussed these current events together -- and that we are doing 'everything right' in her opinion.  She wants to 'spark the engagement' so students will research on their own to dig deeper as their interest leads and then elaborate on these topics in weekly writing assignments.  

 

'The class is a launching pad for further discussion outside of class -- with no specific agenda.'   

 

The purpose of the class is to 'teach the CC power standards' that she and the principal selected together.  

 

She will post topics daily on Canvas.  

 

ETA:  I'm thankful we had such a productive phone conversation.  I'm glad I voiced my concerns, but I would tone it down next time.  Homeschool hovering habits die hard. :)

 

To be cont....

 

 

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Just received the sweetest phone call from this teacher, thanking me for taking such a strong interest in this GF class.  She wishes all GF students and parents discussed these current events together -- and that we are doing 'everything right' in her opinion.  She wants to 'spark the engagement' so students will research on their own to dig deeper as their interest leads and then elaborate on these topics in weekly writing assignments.  

 

'The class is a launching pad for further discussion outside of class -- with no specific agenda.'   

 

The purpose of the class is to 'teach the CC power standards' that she and the principal selected together.  

 

She will post topics daily on Canvas.  

 

ETA:  I'm thankful we had such a productive phone conversation.  I'm glad I voiced my concerns, but I would tone it down next time.  Homeschool hovering habits die hard. :)

 

To be cont....

 

What a nice response from the teacher!

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It was a good response. Telling the teacher that you corrected her inaccurate information is probably best avoided though - unless it is maths or grammar.

I respectfully disagree.  Teachers can/do make mistakes.  Thankfully the teachers at this particular school seem very progressive and open to dialogue with parents and students.

 

Thank you for your feedback. 

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Saying I disagree with or I think dc misunderstood is one think. Saying you are wrong is another especially when it is a subject in which there can be many opinions.

 

I said in my OP: We don't want her using the term 'global warming' as that is not accurate. 

 

The teacher gave my daughter misinformation and I have no problem telling her my opinion and how I directed dd on my end.  The teacher's response in this case was very positive and we had a productive discussion.  Global Forum class is meant as a jumping off point for further discussion.

 

From my brief experience thus far, I am confident these teachers can handle disagreements with parents.  I'm not concerned about offending them with my opinions.  They're all young, eager and progressive.  Dd is loving every moment.   So glad I entered her name in the lottery last winter....

 

Thank you for your feedback.

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