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Social Education May/June 2003

Letters to the Editor

Editor's Notebook

Iraq:Answering Student Questions
An Information Section Prepared by the Staff of Social Education
Social studies teachers across the country share their approaches to addressing the Iraq War.


The Role of the United Nations in Postwar Iraq: A Lesson Plan
PBS NewsHour Extra
This lesson plan provides students with an opportunity to debate the pros and cons of UN involvement in present-day Iraq.

Teaching with Documents
Letter from President Lyndon B. Johnson to John Steinbeck
Lee Ann Potter
The letter featured in this article offers insight into the mutual respect shared between author John Steinbeck and former U.S. President Lyndon B. Johnson. Although Steinbeck’s opinion on the Vietnam War varied, he was a strong supporter of Johnson’s position on the war at the time the letter was written.


Incorporating Effective Writing Strategies
Maria M. McCoy
The author explores how to address the issue of writing skills when assigning social studies papers.


Poetry for Social Studies: Poems, Standards, and Strategies
Sylvia M. Vardell
The brevity, conceptual focus, and rich vocabulary of poetry make it a natural teaching tool for social studies.

Pull Out Section

Historical Fiction to Historical Fact: Gangs of New York and the Whitewashing of History
Benjamin Justice
Martin Scorsese’s movie joins a long list of films that have attempted to cater to the public’s fascination with history. Although promises of historical accuracy may woo movie goers to the theater, the author argues that big budget films should not pass fiction off as fact.


Writing Women into the Curriculum
Paula Sincero and Christine Woyshner
The authors offer an innovative blueprint for integrating women’s history into elementary and middle level curricula.


Silence on Gays and Lesbians in Social Studies Curriculum
Stephen J. Thornton
Despite the striking growth in the social, political, legal, and media presence of gays in American life, few social studies materials treat gay history or issues substantively.


Educational Democracy in the Czech Republic
Anna Vysoka
This article highlights the unique challenges faced by educational reformers in the post-communist Czech Republic.

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