Translate page with Google

Pulitzer Center Update March 31, 2016

News Bites and Lesson Plan of the Week: School and Identity


MIKE PINAY, Qu’Appelle Indian Residential School (1953-1963).“It was the worst 10 years of my life. I was away from my family from the age of six to 16. How do you learn about family? I didn’t know what love was. We weren’t even known by names back then. I was a number.” Image by Daniella Zalcman. Canada, 2015.

For more than a century, many Western governments operated a network of Indian Residential Schools...

Media file: zalcman1.jpg
Mike Pinay attended Qu’Appelle Indian Residential School (1953-1963). Pinay says, “It was the worst ten years of my life. I was away from my family from the age of 6 to 16. How do you learn about relationships, how do you learn about family? I didn’t know what love was. We weren’t even known by names back then; I was a number … 73.” Image by Daniella Zalcman. Canada, 2015.

Dear Educators,

Here are this week's featured lesson plans and updates on the Pulitzer Center's Education Events:

News Bite Lesson: School and Identity

Daniella Zalcman won the 2016 FotoEvidence Book Award this week for "Signs of Your Identity," a photography project that investigates the lasting impacts of Indian residential schools on Canada's First Nations community. The attached lesson invites students to examine the impacts of a potentially dangerous school environment on a person's future through discussion, writing and exploration of the project's photography and interviews.

Featured Lesson: Power Lunch, India's Mid-Day Meal Program

Our featured Lesson Plan of the Week was written by Anne Charny, an educator at Sidwell Friends School in Washington, D.C. Starting with a discussion about what would happen if schools in the U.S. didn't provide lunch, students learn about India's mid-day meal program and evaluate how authors use multimedia to emphasize different details when reporting on the program.

Education News: D.C. Public Schools Analyze the Impact of Mining By Australian Companies in Africa

What is a company's responsibility to its workers? What role should a government play in protecting the rights of workers employed by international companies? What is our responsibility to the people that mine the minerals we use?

Last week, over 100 D.C. Public School students debated these questions through a guided exercise led by Will Fitzgibbon and Eleanor Bell. Bell and Fitzgibbon first met with middle school and high school students to discuss their investigative reporting project "Fatal Extraction", which uncovered a trend of poor mining practices by Australian companies in Africa. Students were then broken into groups and given a scenario where an Australian company wants to open a mine in an African nation. They were assigned the roles of workers' union representative, country president, mining company CEO and community leader. After 15 minutes, each group got to present their opinion of the hypothetical mining project to the class and answer questions from the perspectives of their assigned roles.

"Why don't the people mining make the money," a seventh grader at The Seed School asked. "Why do the companies treat people differently in Africa than they do Australia," asked an 11th grader at Cardozo High School. At the conclusion of a visit with Thurgood Marshall Public Charter School, Global Issues teacher Annie Luttrell asked, "What is your role as a buyer and consumer of these products?"

"I'm a consumer and I feel like I indirectly support their actions," one student responded. "We should learn where our things come from and how they are made."

Click here to set up a visit with a Pulitzer Center journalist-grantee in your classroom in-person or over Skype!

Want more education news? Sign up for our newsletter here.


teal halftone illustration of a family carrying luggage and walking


Migration and Refugees

Migration and Refugees
navy halftone illustration of a female doctor with her arms crossed


Health Inequities

Health Inequities
navy halftone illustration of a group of pharmaceutical pills


Outbreaks and Epidemics

Outbreaks and Epidemics