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war/peace lessons


Date: Sun Sep 16 2001 - 11:57:39 PDT

In our common desire to provide meaningful and appropriate art lessons in the
wake of this tragedy, let us be mindful of our students' true feelings. Not
having answers, I ponder many questions. Is it appropriate for us to have
our students making doves or cranes? (We are in a NY suburban district, where
students, staff & community have suffered personal losses) Is it appropriate
for me to instruct my students to make symbols of peace? Should I teach that
it is appropriate to turn the other cheek? (This is a noble Christian
concept, but perhaps not a state-sponsored goal) Do Guernica and the work of
Golub not teach the evils of war and thus the precious quality of peace?
Didn't WWII show that peace at all costs is irresponsible? That part of what
we owe future generations is the protection of their rights and freedoms?I am
not a reactionary war monger. I am the mother of two draft age boys and am
quite liberal politically. I desire peace now and I desire peace for the
future. I am obviously searching for something meaningful for my students --
we are sure to be asked to make posters and such for Red Cross and student
govt programs. Last year, my 7th graders selected an American symbol and
incorporated it or depicted it in the spirit of an artist, style or cluture
they had researched. I believe I will adapt this lesson. But I am still
thinking about it---