Monday, May 11, 2009

Post #24 - Censorship Intro

Obligatory apologies for not updating - blah blah blah. I know. OK, that's done.

Fahrenheit 451 - I had forgotten how much I LOVE this book. It's our last hurrah with my advanced honors students, and we started today.

I wanted to start our discussion today with censorship and give them a broader knowledge of what censorship entails; it's not just the library banning books or the radio editing lyrics. I wanted them to see how censorship is essentially controlling who gets what (or how much) knowledge and the most dangerous, extreme ends of that manipulation.

We started with a discussion on Censorship, feeling out what they already knew about it. How would you define it? What images come to mind? Does it have negative or positive connotations? That was a fun discussion.

I then provided them with the "textbook" definition, and explained that we'd look at censorship in a variety of historic instances, from 16th century England to contemporary Cuba. I'd already selected short readings that fit this bill and attached a copy of the "Censorship Packet Cover" to each appropriate reading. I currently only have 5 readings, but over the summer (or maybe next year?) I'll work on finding 2-3 more. They broke into groups and followed the directions on the packet cover for their reading.

They gave a 2-3 sentence summary regarding their historic event and then provided 3 interesting facts to the class about their reading. What I loved was that other groups actually listened and reacted to what they heard ("You mean they didn't...Why didn't someone just...Serious??")

After a quick wrap-up reminder that they should keep these censorship ideas - what provokes censorship, what is the danger in it - in mind as we venture forth into the awesomeness of Fahrenheit 451.

Tomorrow, we'll talk about the alienation of technology.

Censorship Introduction PPT

Censorship Packet Cover

Censorship in Cuba Reading
Hitler Youth Reading
Hollywood Ten Reading
16th c. England Censorship Reading
Book Burning -1933

source: I owe the idea to a webquest I found online; it gave me a springboard & directed me to three of the readings- Fahrenheit 451 Webquest

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