Flipped Videos:


Tuesday, November 29, 2016

The of Survivors of Genocide, Crimes Against Humanity & Mass Atrocity

The title of this post is the title of a conference I attended at Ramapo College on November 17, 2016. This conference/workshop was put together by the Gumpert Center for Holocaust and Genocide Studies. I have attended this workshop every year for many years now. Every year I learn many new things, have been moved by survivors stories, and get to collaborate with other teachers. As always, I want to share as much of my experience with my students. Hence, this blog post aims to do so.

To see and read what I experienced, first read my tweets in the Storify link below:

You will notice that my tweets ended during the testimony of survivor Ms. Judith Bihaly. Her story was both alarming, heart-wrenching, and inspiring. What a strong and amazing woman! I felt that my tweets could not capture her story in a way that captured the moment. Therefore, I stopped tweeting and started taking notes. To read the rest of the story, read the notes I took below: 

Russian soldiers were nice
Used an out-house, only had  one dress, no soles in her shoes
Had lice- had to shave head- wanted  nobody to look at her, she screamed if anyone did
Her mom was liberated from Theresienstadt (concentration camp.) 
Her mom found her twin brother and then her 6 months later ( she was staying with an older woman)
Her family couldn’t have their home back “If you don’t go away right now, I’ll let the dog loose on you” (that's what the family that moved into her house told her.) 
“They were good Nazis and powerful in the government” (The people that lived in her house). - Her mom sued and managed to get one room in the apt. She stayed there, but sent her and her brother in an orphanage. It was run by a Zionist organization to prepare kids to go to Israel. That’s when she learned she was Jewish- she thought she was Catholic “ I loved going to mass” (She grew up going to Catholic school). "My brother and I grew up without friends because of fear, my parents hid us and our jewish identity." But then finding she was Jewsih:  “I finally was somebody, I always knew something was wrong”-  (This was 1946.)
Left Hungary at age 12. Her mom was on list of people to be imprisoned because she made trouble for new owners of home. Went to various DP camps. (Vienna- Germany, etc, always as a group) Her mother didn’t want to go to Israel, registered to go to US.  She went to Israel in 1947 without her (Palestine). Left Italy in a boat (walnut shell) . In 2005 she learned she was on one of the only two boats to make the journey. 
Mom sued Israel for kidnapping and she won, brought to US in 1950
 Adjusted well in the US (her brother not quite as well.)
 “My mother was a litigious person, she survived Auschwitz, she was a fighter.” Did she go into law? “No, dressmaking.”

Back in Hungary: She had a bowl of soup from a different family on a wooden chair. This family knew where she ( her mother) was taken . Her brother was used as slave labor when he was ten. 

Back in the US: She wanted to be a teacher but in the 1950s city college for teaching was bad- so she took psychology to learn learning theory. Had a child in 1962.  Earned her Bachelors in 1967. Teaching certificate . Masters in Patterson in mathematics education and taught in Tenafly for 26 yrs middle school. “Oh I got a divorce in 1987”.  “There wasn’t that much” Why a teacher?  “I didn’t know what else to do. I had many interests, especially ballet. But it wasn’t a career to go into when I came to the US at age 15.” “I didn’t debate it, somehow I thought I was always going to be a teacher.”  1950- treated wonderfully by Americans, but they'd ask "Where is Hungary, in Europe? No understanding of history or interest in it. SOBRA (native born Israelis) – didn’t want to hear abt the Holocaust. You couldn’t speak Yiddish in Israel in 47-50, it was a source of shame. They got greencards and became citizens as quickly as they could, I think within 4 years.
She had no resentment for British for going to Israel. 
photograph of the speaker as a child

“Thank you for listening”

Your Task: 

Over the summer, Mr. Paul Winkler passed away. He was the director of the NJ Holocaust Commission. He used to tell people that Holocaust education was only effective if it influenced the "Mind, heart, and hands." Another words, it should make you think, make you feel, and make you act.

Read the tweets on the storify link as well as the notes I took on Ms. Bihaly. There are many different topics related to the Holocaust as well as current issues from our world today. Respond to any specific statement, quote it, and explain in a paragraph how it can influence your mind, heart, and hands. Each student should pick an original statement or image to respond to. I look forward to reading your responses. 

Friday, November 4, 2016

The James Webb Telescope: From Galileo to Tomorrow's Surprises

In our next unit, we will learn about the Scientific Revolution. Not only will will learn about the new technologies and discoveries that came with it, but we will learn about  many bigger ideas about humanity that came with it. Imagine suddenly learning more about outer-space with a telescope, and more about cells with a microscope. From the very small to the very far away, the idea of just what is the universe and what is mankind's place in it was questioned in ways that were new and previously unimaginable. That is one reason why Galileo's telescope was revolutionary. Will the new telescope be just as revolutionary?

Soon, the James Webb Space telescope will gather information that will continue to influence how we perceive space, our Earth, and what human potential can achieve.

On Wednesday, November 2nd, NASA had a press briefing about this fascinating new telescope. Our classes watched the briefing, and tweeted questions to the moderator. Two of our questions were answered live!  They were answered by Dr John Mather, he works for NASA and even won the Nobel Prize in Physics! Read more about him on his biography here:

In the picture above, Dr Mather is pictured with NASA Director Charles Bolden. Both answered questions and spoke of the accomplishments related to constructing this telescope, and referring to the data it aims to collect. 

Please watch the video from November 2nd: 

Here are some of our tweets from the event: 

Class: We asked the question about how revolutionary will this telescope be. (I think they were impressed with what we asked!) Dr Mather mentioned that this telescope will give us many new surprises. It's fascinating to imagine what new surprises they will be! When thinking of them, consider the other information about the telescope that is provided in the video. Then, try to answer the question yourself. (You may need to do background research on Galileo's telescope for comparison.) Each response should be original, and each one should incorporate different information from the video. I look forward to reading your responses, and hope to share them with some "NASA folks" afterwards!