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In the MIx Quiz Scrapbook Program Episodes Teachers
Teachers: Classroom Activities
Classroom Activities Resources
E-Mail Pen-Pal Activities

Help students develop an appreciation for different cultures and perspectives.

E-mail Pen-Pal Activities
"Living with Change" Activity
"Media Literacy" Activities
Scrapbook Exchange "Dealing With Differences" Activities

Objectives:
  • Students will exchange personal and cultural information and stories with international pen pals.
  • Students will broaden their understanding and develop appreciation of diverse cultures, customs, and styles.
Following the model of the scrapbooks on the NEW NORMAL Web site, pen pals can create and exchange scrapbooks about themselves. They can include vital statistics such as name, birthday, age, address, and school; photos and written descriptions of themselves, their families, friends, homes, and neighborhoods; favorite activities, quotations, books, television shows, and movies; and so on, as well as thoughts on September 11th, peace, violence, and terrorism. Scrapbooks can be periodically expanded and updated.

Students can use their scrapbooks to initiate e-mail dialogues about political, cultural, and personal issues. These exchanges could be free-form or structured around specific topics, including:
  • The effects of September 11th on students' visions of the future.
  • Gender roles in students' cultures.
  • The degree to which young people contribute actively in their cultures.
  • Students' experience with the effects of stereotyping.
See the Resources section for information on free Web sites that can help you establish e-mail correspondence with classrooms in other countries.

What's News?

Objectives:
  • Students will examine cultural, social, and political influences on how news is reported in different countries and cultures.
  • Students will broaden their understanding and develop appreciation of diverse cultures, customs, and styles.
Pen pals can engage in a "news exchange" by visiting Web sites of news media from each other's regions. For instance, a student in Jerusalem might visit THE NEW YORK TIMES at www.nytimes.com, while her pen pal in New York might check out HA'ARETZ DAILY at www.haaretzdaily.com. Students can then discuss similarities and differences in how the news is selected and presented in their regions. (For a comprehensive listing of news Web sites, visit Google at www.google.com and click on "News and Resources".) Student Handout 1, News Site Exploration: Guiding Questions, can help students structure their responses. This student handout is a .pdf file and requires the Adobe Acrobat Reader.

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