Social Studies Video

Lessons From the War in Ukraine: A History Teacher Shares Her Approach

By Jaclyn Borowski — March 04, 2022 1 min read
  • Save to favorites
  • Print

First, they came with questions. Would there be a draft? Was this going to become World War III? What would an invasion of Ukraine mean for the United States? Then, as more and more information came out on social media, Kathryn Greene’s students came in with videos, misinformation, and some conspiracy theories. At that point, having worked hard to answer their questions and address their fears, she decided to put together more structured lessons around what was happening, the historical context, and ways of navigating social media during this crisis.

Greene teaches AP and College Prep World History at Eleanor Roosevelt High School in Eastvale, Calif. The school is one of the largest comprehensive high schools in the state, serving more than 4,600 students. Greene works with 190 of them each week.

Her lessons, which she’s shared on Twitter with countless other teachers, have led to increased engagement from her class who are concerned by what they’re seeing online and looking for more support from teachers, she said.

In 15-20 minutes each day, they practice their media literacy skills, examining videos they’ve come across and stories they’ve seen and working to verify their authenticity, or lack thereof. This week, they focused on how the media has covered the refugee crisis, reviewing articles, podcasts, and videos as a class.

But Greene is also conscious of the stress and emotional toll the last two years of the pandemic have taken on students and has worked to give them a space to process their thoughts and feelings in these lessons as well.

She’s noticed they’ve been particularly pulled in by the stories on social media that pull at the heart strings. And were disappointed when they learned that an air strike video that had gone viral was actually footage from a video game. It’s been an eye-opening experience that’s increased their awareness of how easily content can be re-packaged to fit a different narrative, she said, and a rare opportunity to use real-life examples in her lessons on misinformation and media literacy.

Events

This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
Early Childhood Webinar
How the Science of Reading Elevates Our Early Learners to Success
From the creators of ABCmouse, learn how a solution grounded in the science of reading can prepare our youngest learners for kindergarten.
Content provided by Age of Learning
This content is provided by our sponsor. It is not written by and does not necessarily reflect the views of Education Week's editorial staff.
Sponsor
English-Language Learners Webinar
Classroom Strategies for Building EL Students’ Confidence and Success
Fueling success for EL students who are learning new concepts while navigating an unfamiliar language. Join the national discussion of strategies and Q&A.
Content provided by Project Lead The Way
Future of Work Live Online Discussion Seat at the Table: Understanding the Critical Link Between Student Mental Health and the Future of Work
In recent months, there’s been a rallying cry against the teaching of social-emotional skills. Discover why students need these skills now more than ever.

EdWeek Top School Jobs

Teacher Jobs
Search over ten thousand teaching jobs nationwide — elementary, middle, high school and more.
View Jobs
Principal Jobs
Find hundreds of jobs for principals, assistant principals, and other school leadership roles.
View Jobs
Administrator Jobs
Over a thousand district-level jobs: superintendents, directors, more.
View Jobs
Support Staff Jobs
Search thousands of jobs, from paraprofessionals to counselors and more.
View Jobs

Read Next

Social Studies How 'Fair' Is Our Government? And Other Big Questions Teachers Are Posing for Constitution Day
The holiday is an opportunity to teach about the founding document and its relevance today. The times provide a lot of material.
8 min read
Students in Janell Cinquini's constitution law class work on an assignment at Lakeridge High School in Lake Oswego, Ore., on Sept. 13, 2022.
Students in Janell Cinquini's constitution law class work on an assignment at Lakeridge High School in Lake Oswego, Ore., on Sept. 13, 2022.
Howard Lao for Education Week
Social Studies Q&A How Should Asian American History Be Taught? A Scholar Explains
A high school elective course in Asian American studies is under review for approval as Texas updates its social studies standards.
7 min read
Young Asian Americans take part in a AAPI Youth Voices for Change Rally against discrimination and racism, in Pasadena, Calif., Saturday, June 26, 2021.
Asian American students take part in a AAPI Youth Voices for Change Rally against discrimination and racism, in Pasadena, Calif., last year.
Ringo Chiu via AP
Social Studies 'Roe v. Wade' Won't Be on Next Year's AP Government Test
The decision is an early example of how the U.S. Supreme Court’s recent ruling will reshape how Constitutional issues are taught.
4 min read
Norma McCorvey, Jane Roe in the 1973 court case, left, and her attorney Gloria Allred hold hands as they leave the Supreme Court building in Washington, DC., Wednesday, April 26, 1989.
Norma McCorvey, Jane Roe in the 1973 court case, left, and her attorney Gloria Allred hold hands as they leave the Supreme Court building in Washington in 1989.
J. Scott Applewhite/AP
Social Studies Opinion Teaching Social Studies Isn't for the Faint of Heart
Few school subjects provoke controversy as much as social studies. Here's help for teachers to address topics head-on.
4 min read
Messed up puzzle pieces of an American flag on a dark blue background
iStock/Getty Images Plus