War and Terrorism

Current Events: Iraq and 9/11

Global educators respond to the possibility of war with Iraq by having students:

  1. Learn up to date historical, political, economic, and geographic background of the conflict;
  2. Recognize stereotypes and misinformation they may have about Iraqis and other people in the region;
  3. Examine issues that led to U.S. policy decisions and research possible outcomes of a war;
  4. Understand how accepted knowledge and perspectives of relevant countries (U.S., Turkey, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran, Jordan, Britain, France, Germany, Russia, China, etc.) is shaped by its history, cultures, politics, and economics;
  5. Analyze primary sources from diverse world regions on the issues and events;
  6. Interact with people from the region who can share insider information;
  7. Synthesize and debate the issues based upon all these learning experiences.

The following articles are free PDFs. The members only archives of NCSS journals is available through Journal Archives (members Only)

Crisis with Iraq Lesson Plan, developed by the Choices for the 21st Century Education program, from the November/December 2002 issue of Social Education.
Political map of Iraq

Detailed map of Iraq region

Simplified map of Iraq region

War with Iraq, a special In Focus section, from the April 2003 issue of Social Education.

Spotlight on Iraq, background information on the history of Iraq and the Saddam Hussein regime from the November/December 2002 issue of Social Education.

Shifting Sands, a lesson plan, developed by the Choices for the 21st Century Education program, analyzing the mix of interests and values that have drawn America into the Middle East. The unit asks high school students to consider the principles and assumptions driving America's expanded presence in the Middle East.

Intervention in Iraq, produced by The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer, this site brings together the latest news as well as extensive background information on the region. The NewsHour also provides lesson plans.

September 11

'Dear Teacher': Letters on the Eve of the Japanese American Imprisonment, discusses the illegal imprisonment of American citizens of Japanese descent during World War II. It contains suggestions for classroom teaching with the use of primary historical documents: letters written by Japanese American middle school students to their teacher in Seattle, Washington in 1942 and 1943.

We are Living History: Reflections of a New York City Social Studies Teacher: The attacks on the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001, had a profound impact on the nation and the world. A social studies teacher chronicles the events as they happened in her own neighborhood in lower Manhattan.

The Trauma of Terrorism: Helping Children Cope: In the wake of tragedy, how can we help our students make sense of events, feel safe and protected, and even learn from the experience?

At Risk of Prejudice: Teaching Tolerance about Muslim Americans: Common misperceptions about the religion of Islam threaten to distort views of Muslim Americans and their convictions. The author answers questions about the Muslim faith, community, and beliefs.

At Risk of Prejudice: The Arab American Community: As Arab Americans face growing resentment from segments of the U.S. population, how can we protect our Arab American students from encountering such prejudice, educate all our students about the Arab American community, and emphasize tolerance over bigotry?

Debating War and Peace in Washington Square Park: This sampling of comments posted in Washington Square Park after September 11 shows that, along with sadness and anger, a democratic spirit is alive and well in New York City.

Media Literacy Skills: Interpreting Tragedy: With the onslaught of media coverage about terrorism and war, students must learn to question, analyze, and think critically about the values and perspectives behind media messages.

Following a Tragic Event: A Necessary Challenge for Civic Educators: Far from advancing a single perspective about recent events, teachers need to encourage discussion and debate in the classroom.

In War, Is Law Silent? Security and Freedom After September 11: From airport security to wiretapping to racial profiling, in times of crisis, how do we balance the desire for personal freedom with the need for national security?

Teaching about Terrorism, Islam, and Tolerance with the Internet: Internet sites exploring such subjects as the Taliban, U.S. foreign policy, the Muslim religion, teaching tolerance, and more.

Civil War in Afghanistan: This lesson plan on the civil war in Afghanistan includes a current map of the region, a brief history of the country, and a description of the warring factions.

Letters to the Editor Page 1, Page 2: Readers criticize recent articles about the aftermath of September 11, and authors respond.

2001 NCSS Presidential Address: Members of NCSS and their colleagues and students were aboard the American Airlines flight that crashed into the Pentagon. We owe it to our students to rise to the challenge... In today's world, how can we - as social studies educators and as citizens - continue to celebrate and improve on our "American Experiment"?

The Women of Afghanistan: Years of oppression by the Taliban regime have left Afghan women in a tragic situation.

Restoring the Rights of Afghan Women: An Interview with Nasrine Abou-Bakre Gross: An Afghan American woman and activist talks with Social Education about the role of education, the future of women's rights, and her hopes for Afghanistan.

A Thoughtful Patriotism: Through poetry, art, and patriotic speeches, students can deliberate on the true meaning of patriotism and become thoughtful and effective citizens.

Afghanistan In Focus: News, information, maps and statistics on the war in Afghanistan.

My Name is Osama: This short story appeared in the May/June 2002 issue of Middle Level Learning, a supplement to Social Education.

We Are Strong/We Are Vulnerable: This article originally appeared in the January/February 2002 edition of Social Studies and the Young Learner.

Both Sides of the Classroom Door: After 9-11, the Many Facets of Teaching: This article originally appeared in the January/February 2002 edition of Social Studies and the Young Learner.

Growing Up in the Aftermath of Terrorism: This article originally appeared in the November/December 2001 edition of Social Studies and the Young Learner.

World Religions and Personal Tolerance: This article originally appeared in the May/June 2002 edition of Social Studies and the Young Learner.

In Focus: Bioterror: This article originally appeared in the March 2002 edition of Social Education.

Military Tribunals and the War Against Terrorism: This article originally appeared in the March 2002 edition of Social Education.

The Aftereffects of September 11 - What the Polls Tell Us: This article originally appeared in the March 2002 edition of Social Education.

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