Trey Hooper

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Trey Hooper
Posted almost 2 years ago
Using the lessons of History to teach high school students better ways of approaching their social lives.
There would still be much thought needed to arrive at an ideal use of this idea, but the specific example that continues to pop up into my mind is that of the Stoics. Each student would select their own problem or challenge, this could be outside of their social life just as long as it is important and relevant to them, and then see if the teachings and behavior of the stoics provides a model for a different and possibly better way of handling that challenge. I would imagine that if some piece of history shows students how to find or improve better relationships, students would see more than a large pool of knowledge to drown in, but instead WHY we learn history and the potential life lessons it imparts onto us. This would not be me telling them that the life of a Stoic is what they should aim for, but rather it would be them telling me how they think a Stoic would handle the problem, what the consequence would be, and whether or not they believe that the life of a Stoic holds any value to them personally. Take a look at Alexander the Great. I might ask students how he reached that level of success (by being cultured, well-educated, a keen diplomat [which is improved through practicing healthy social skills], etc...) and if they can apply any of it to themselves. By telling students that different people, groups of people, or different philosophies could potentially hold a key to the immediate improvement of their lives, I believe students will dig deeper into the material in search of it.
Noface
Trey Hooper
Posted almost 2 years ago
Using the lessons of History to teach high school students better ways of approaching their social lives.
I agree that the aim is to create educated citizens, but I disagree that social lives do not play a role in that. The information that has been passed down to us, as a people and as individuals, has done so ín part because we are social creatures. Also, It does not follow that just having a large pool of knowledge is worth anything in itself. This large pool of knowledge is most always tapped into in order to solve some sort of problem. Starting small by applying history's lessons to social lives shows students the potential for using history in order to better understand and approach any problem. Real world application could begin with what matters to them. This is one way to pique their interest. Maybe my most valued goal of secondary education is to instill the PASSION of learning in students so that they may continue learning about our constantly changing world. Also, to show them the creativity involved in such things as History. Having students look at some unique problem or challenge they face in their own life and apply different historical lessons will 1) encourage students to learn more about the specific historical topic, and 2) force them to think creatively and abstractly in order to extract what historical information is personally valuable to them.