Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

November 11, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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New Veterans Day Resources

November 10, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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More Important Resources On Race & Racism

Here are new additions to A Collection Of Useful Posts, Articles & Videos On Race & Racism:

Why We Have So Many Terms For ‘People Of Color’ is from NPR.

Panic, Shame, and Cuffs: An Account From an Arrested Black Teacher is from Education Week.

The Economic Impact of School Suspensions is from The Atlantic.

Regarding teachers of color: Boston Public Schools system is set to lead once again is from The Hechinger Report.

When whites are guilty of colorism is from The Washington Post.

“It’s symbolic annihilation of history, and it’s done for a purpose. It really enforces white supremacy”: Edward Baptist on the lies we tell about slavery is from Salon.

Millions of black students attend public schools that are highly segregated by race and by income is from The Urban Institute.

The N-Word is an impressive interactive from The Washington Post.

Eschew the Taboo: The pernicious effects of banning words. is an older piece by Christopher Hitchens.


Politics and the African-American Human Language
appeared in The Atlantic.

Who Can Use The N-Word? That’s The Wrong Question is from NPR.

Text to Text | ‘Little Things Are Big’ and ‘Students See Many Slights as Racial ‘Microaggressions’ is from The New York Times Learning Network.

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November 10, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Berlin Wall Resources

Yesterday was the twenty-fifth anniversary of the fall of the Berlin Wall. I already have some related resources at The Best Sites To Learn About Walls That Separate Us, but here are three more I’m adding:

Here’s a video of a project that placed balloons in the original location of the Berlin Wall:

Interactive Timeline: The Berlin Wall, Beginning to End is from TIME.

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November 9, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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“The 10 greatest changes of the past 1,000 years”

The 10 greatest changes of the past 1,000 years is an excellent article in The Guardian. In it, a historian describes shares his opinion of the greatest change that occurred in each of the last ten centuries.

It’s a fascinating article, I think, for anyone to read. The real reason I’m posting about it, though, is because I’ll be using the idea in my World History class for English Language Learners. We’re just finishing up a unit on the “First Civilizations,” and I think I’ll ask them to identify what they think is the greatest change that happened during that period and why they chose it. If it goes well, I might make it a regular assignment at the end of each unit.

In some ways, it’s similar to the “greatest Americans” assignment I use in U.S. History.

Thanks to Michelle Henry for the tip.

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November 8, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Teaching Geography With…Godzilla?

godzilla

The Wall Street Journal has created a neat interactive about Gozilla that has many features, including a world map showing all the communities he has destroyed in the movies.

It could be fun tool for a Geography lesson, one that I’m considering doing in my English Language Learner Geography class.

As an introduction, I’d probably show a couple of Godzilla video clips. I was surprised at the low quality of the ones I could find online, but here are a couple of decent ones:

Speaking of unusual geography lessons, the well-known TED-Ed lesson “How do you decide where to go in a zombie apocalypse?” is another one to consider…

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November 6, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Kentucky Teacher Resigns After Being Suspended Because She Visited Kenya

Paranoia over Ebola continues in some schools (see Examples Of School Hysteria Over Ebola).

A Kentucky elementary teacher who visited Kenya was suspended for twenty-one days because of fears she might have contracted Ebola and has resigned instead.

Here are links to articles about it, a video news report and a quotation from her goodbye letter to students:

Kentucky Teacher Resigns Over Parents’ Dumb Ebola Fears is from New York Magazine.

Teacher Forced to Resign Over Ebola Scare Because Dumb School Has No Idea Where Kenya Is is from 22 Words.

WDRB 41 Louisville News

Now-Id-like-to-leave-you

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November 5, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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The Onion Explains Perfectly The Difference Between “Mobilizing” & “Organizing” For Change

lifechanging

Many people who claim they want to make social change often have a  misunderstanding of community organizing and power. During my nineteen-year organizing career, we helped people see the difference between a “Movement” and a “Broad-Based Community Organization.”

A Movement tends (not always, of course) to have the following characteristics: a charismatic leader or two or three, few longstanding face-to-face relationships among large numbers of people, few plans — if any — for leadership development, a lack of  understanding  that there are no permanent enemies or allies in public life, and a lack of recognition that the whole focus of our efforts should be to get into negotiations to reach a compromise (as long as it was “half a loaf” and not “half a baby”), and little accountability or discipline.

A broad-based community organization would basically be the opposite of that description.

Today, The Onion published a great story that exemplifies one of  the drawbacks of Movements. It’s titled Life-Changing Epiphany Wears Off On Ride Home.

Here’s how it begins:

Despite being overcome by a profound realization just minutes earlier that challenged his long-held beliefs and promised to forever alter his daily existence, sources confirmed that 42-year-old Thomas Wilson’s epiphany had fully worn off during his drive home Wednesday.

It points out what often happens to people outside of a broad-based organization for change — inspiration that often disappears without discipline, accountability and relationships.

And it also points out why those of us interested in change in the education arena should consider placing our emphasis on working with our unions instead of with other groups.

I’m adding this info to The Best Posts & Articles On Building Influence & Creating Change.

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November 4, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Good, But Not Great, Ted-ED Video & Lesson On Power & Change

I’ve previously posted about a TED Talk by Eric Liu (Video: Potentially Useful TED Talk – “Why ordinary people need to understand power”) and my positive and less-than-positive reactions to it.

TED-Ed has now created an animated version (embedded below) and lesson of it that I think it better than the actual TED Talk, but still, I think, makes the idea of power more complicated than it needs to be — especially when he starts talking about something called the “laws of power.” The first three minutes, though, I think are useful.

As I mentioned in my prior post, I’m not adding this resource to to either The Best Posts & Articles On Building Influence & Creating Change or to The Best Websites For Learning About Civic Participation & Citizenship. But portions of it could still be very useful, and I could see using the first part in my own classroom.

Let me know if you agree or have a different perspective on it…

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November 1, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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The Very Last Halloween Resource List Of The Year — Some Excellent Ones Here!

October 30, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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A Few More Halloween Resources

October 29, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Final Halloween Resources

Here are some final additions (for this year) to The Best Websites For Learning About Halloween:

What Do Halloween Costumes Say? is a lesson plan from Teaching Tolerance.

Don’t get what’s wrong with blackface? Here’s why it’s so offensive. is from Vox.

Witches, Vampires And Pirates: 5 Years Of America’s Most Popular Costumes is from NPR.

Halloween Safety: A Worthwhile Infographic is from The ASIDE blog.

Halloween Spending Trend 2014 - MageWorld

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October 29, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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“HeatMap News” Is A Visually Engaging Current Events Site

heatmap

HeatMap News shows spots on a world map where most news reports are coming from at any given moment (based on Google News). Click on the spot, and you’re then shown article summaries, images and links.

I’m adding it to The Best Visually Engaging News Sites.

Thanks to Google Maps Mania for the tip.

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October 29, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Today Is The Second Anniversary Of Hurricane Sandy — Here Are Related Resources

Two years ago today, Hurricane Sandy devastated New York City and other portions of the Northeast United States.

Here are related resources:

First, of course, there is A Beginning List Of The Best Online Resources About Hurricane Sandy.

On Superstorm Sandy Anniversary, Red Cross Under Scrutiny is from NPR.

Hey, New York! People Are Still Recovering From Superstorm Sandy is from The Huffington Post.

Hurricane Sandy resources from The New York Times.

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October 28, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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The Oddest Video You Will Ever See On Economic Inequality

This animation features the voices of Amy Poehler, Maya Rudolph, Billy Eichner, Andy Richter, and Sarah Silverman and is a parody of My Little Pony that is designed to each about economic equality. Yes, you read that correctly. In addition, the director of Anchorman made it.

You can read the full story behind it, which gets even stranger when you learn that it was financed by billionaire Paul Allen.

In fact, it’s so odd that I don’t think I’ll even add it to The Best Resources About Wealth & Income Inequality.

But I think it is interesting, to say the least….

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October 27, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Even More Halloween Resources

Here are even more additions to The Best Websites For Learning About Halloween:

Halloween in Japan 2014 is a fun photo gallery.

Halloween & sitcoms II is from Informed Teachers.

Your Halloween Soundtrack, From A Candy Frenzy To The Dance Of Death is from NPR.

The Good Listener: Where’s All The Great Halloween Music? is also from NPR.

Russia: Activist calls for Halloween ban is from The BBC.

How to teach … Halloween crafts
is from The Guardian.

Pumpkin Facts

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October 27, 2014
by Larry Ferlazzo
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Two Useful Articles On The Value Of “What If?” History Lessons

I’ve written a lot about one of my favorite lessons — have students do “What If?” history projects (see The Best Resources For Teaching “What If?” History Lessons).

There have been two recent articles written describing some of the benefits about looking at history from that perspective:

What If Counterfactuals Never Existed? Studying history with hypotheticals is from The New Republic. It first shares the negatives, and then provides counter-arguments.

History Without Hitler? appeared in The New York Times, and points out some ways this kind of thinking can be helpful related to Arab Spring.

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