Pushing the Elephant

Classroom

When civil war came to Rose’s Congolese village, she was separated from her five-year-old daughter, Nangabire. Rose managed to escape with nine of her 10 children and was eventually resettled in Phoenix, Arizona. More than a decade later, mother and daughter are reunited in the U.S. where they must come to terms with the past and build a new future. These lesson plans explore the long-term and often hidden effects of war on women and families — financial despair, increased susceptibility to rape, and social ostracism. They also ask students to consider what it means to become an active advocate for a peaceful and hopeful future.

The Pushing the Elephant lesson plans explore the long-term and often hidden effects of war on women and families — financial despair, increased susceptibility to rape, and social ostracism. They also ask students to consider what it means to become an active advocate for a peaceful and hopeful future.

The curriculum is directed toward grades 9 through 12, and college students for use in the following subject areas: current events, geography, global studies, government, political science, social studies, sociology, women’s studies, and world history.

The lesson plans for Pushing the Elephant are part of the Community Classroom collection Women and Girls Lead, Volume 1, available at ITVS.org.

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Additional Resources

Discussion Guide (PDF, 3.4MB)

Interactive Timeline of the History of the DR Congo

ITVS Community Classroom is an educational resource providing new documentary film content and accompanying curricular materials, lesson plans, and homework assignments to high school and community college instructors and youth-serving community-based organizations. Content is grouped into subject-specific segments that correspond to lesson plans and educational activities. All classroom materials are designed with key education standards in mind.

Educational content was developed with guidance from the ITVS Classroom National Advisors: PBS Teachers, National Council for the Social Studies, National Council of Teachers of English, National Association for Media Literacy Education, National Council of Teachers of English, National Women’s Studies Association, ConnectEd: The California Center for College and Career, KQED Education Network, and National Teachers of the Year Association.

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