A Model of a 6Second Lesson- Understanding Bias

Norman’s Rockwell’s  The Problem – we all live with
Grades 8 through 12

OBJECTIVE(S) To raise awareness of the historical context of Norman Rockwell’s painting about school integration–and interpretation of the situation of his characters
Writing assignment based on a Norman Rockwell picture giving the characters a voice and feelings- based on the facial expression, body language and setting of the character and historical context

BIG QUESTIONS How do the historical events affect everyday people?
For example, when school were required by law to integrate, how was that received by southern, northern, and why did people behave in that way?

Enhance Emotional Literacy Accurately identifying and interpreting both simple and compound feelings
Recognize Patterns Acknowledging frequently recurring reactions and behaviors.

Length of session: 2 – 3 hours
Materials Needed:
Norman Rockwell biography

Introduction Norman Rockwell was illustrating family and small town life from 1917 – 1963. Have the students read aloud in turn the biography of Norman Rockwell? Read his biography. Rockwell often depicted an idealized America in the same way restaurant ads for MacDonalds celebrate happiness, friendship, and warmth. Ask for the impression that people have gotten from the family friendly During that time the United States went through two major wars, ten presidents, enormous social and scientific changes.
Model, the process with one Rockwell picture, say: show the image enlarged on a screen and ask the kids to notice all the details of the Rosie the Riveter.

Notice that she has huge arms – This, by the way, was not the way the model looked. Rockwell painted Man arms to show her strength or was it a little joke? Her face is dirty, a little bit coy or shy. Does this woman think she is attractive? Is she trying to be attractive? Why is she a riveter- that’s traditionally a man’s job?

Then the teacher will bring in the real events During wwII the women did take factory jobs, and it change the workforce of the country.

During that time, the United States went through two major wars, ten presidents, enormous social and scientific changes. Choose an event that is connected to Rockwell’s painting
What happened,
Where did it happen,
Why did it happen,
What were the consequences of the event?

This will take at least one hour to research and write up-
When the class has completed this –

Next the teacher will take one of Rockwell’s picture See the one “the problem we all face.”

Ask the students to study the image silently for about 3 minutes and notice everything that is going on. Then have them guess the context of the painting. School integration around 1961. Why do you suppose Rockwell chose a little girl and dressed her in white.

What do her expression and posture suggest to you? What is the implication of the red tomato on the wall? What is the writing on the wall? If you were in the crowd, what would you be thinking and doing not as yourself but someone from that place and time? Then have the student quickly write a paragraph from the point of view of the guard, the girl or a person in the crowd. You may write as if the incident happened yesterday as you are writing a letter or making a journal entry OrYou may tell the story as if it happen a long time ago

(note: young writers will need support with this – you may have to give them feeling, words, and ideas from different point of view. Why is the painting called the Problem we all live with? What does that mean?

Have the student type these up and share with each other in class. Discuss how different people have different points of view and why they do.

For example, white people thought that having African Americans in school would ruin their school. Why?
African Americans wanted integration although they were concerned for their safety. Why was that?
Who is George Wallace? What did he Represent?

The Problem We All Live With

Artist Norman Rockwell
Year 1964

The Problem We All Live With is an oil on canvas painting by the American artist Norman Rockwell, produced in 1964. The painting is 36 by 58 inches and is displayed in the Norman Rockwell Museum in Stockbridge, Massachusetts.
Rockwell had produced many works with a social or political theme. This painting was created at a time when racial desegregation was causing conflict throughout the U.S. Education was no longer segregated by color, and African-American children could attend schools that had previously been all-white.
The painting shows a young African-American girl in a white dress, with white shoes and socks. She is carrying items she needs in school in her left hand. She is walking, and escorted by four U.S. marshals, two in front of her and two behind, whose heads are not shown. They are dressed in plain clothes, but wearing armbands to show their authority. They are there to protect the girl from protesters, none of whom are shown.

What is the story behind this painting/

Rosie The Riveter

Artist Norman Rockwell
Year 1943
Medium Oil on canvas
Dimensions 52 x 40 in
132 x 102 cm
Norman Rockwell Famous Artwork
Freedom of Speech, 1943

Freedom from Want, 1943

Freedom of Worship, 1943

Freedom from Fear, 1943

The Problem We All Live With, 1964

Breaking Home Ties, 1954

Russian Schoolroom, 1967

Rosie The Riveter, 1943
Complete Works

Rosie the Riveter is an oil painting that is a classic example of Regionalism. The imagery of the piece became a symbol for the millions of “Rosies” across America working for the World War II effort. In the picture, Rosie is portrayed wearing denim work wear, eating her lunch sandwich, with her rivet gun at rest on her knee. The painting was commissioned as cover art for the Saturday Evening Post magazine in 1943.
Rockwell’s Legacy
Norman Rockwell produced a body of over 4,000 works in his lifetime. His painting methods began with small sketches, an accumulation of props to set the scene before building up to the painting itself. His work was popular and commercial and included illustrations of more than forty books, including Huckleberry Finn and Tom Sawyer, but the iconic symbol of America’s women fighting the Second World War on home turf remains his most well-known piece. The original painting was auctioned in 2002 for $4.96 million

So, what do people think about Norman Rockwell’s work?
Show the real thing photo from the news archive?
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Norman Rockwell
Most Famous Painting
Norman Rockwell
Best Paintings Ever
Norman Rockwell
Christmas Paintings
Norman Rockwell
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View Source: goodreads.com

You might grade the written response paper or extend into an essay on the topic Why is “listening well” important to a community?

Homework / Extensions: The teacher may want a quiet alternative to a discussion or a follow-up homework that would be:

I was surprised that….

I noticed I had a tendency to …..

The most important thing I learned was ….

I think I could improve my listening if I ……..

I think I could improve my communicating if I

As an observer, I notice that people often ….

The reason listening is important to the community is…

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Social Pragmatics, Tone and Music

Social Pragmatics and the tone  (the attitude ) of a sentence is frequently a mystery to student who are on the autism scale.  Was speaking to a young teacher who was working with children on the this spectrum.  We discussed the challenges of teaching them to comprehend “the tone” of a sentence, identifying whether the string of words were spoken in a  sarcastic, patronizing, a questioning or hostile way.    Had an “aha”moment when I connected using notes on a piano to simulate the pace, inflection, and pitch of each word in a sentence.  Since music is left brained, I wondered if it would support spectrum kids to “get” the meaning in that way.  There is a chapter on Tone in the Book Cognitive Yoga. What do you think? Would this work?

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What skills will remain valid for the next generation?

What skills will remain valid for the next generation?

Cognitive Yoga –

What skills will remain valid for the next generation?At the rate of knowledge expansion and  technological advances, if we went to sleep for 5 years and suddenly woke up, our day would be a challenge.  Technologies, sciences, trends  are mutating so rapidly that what we know how to do will be obsolete progressively at a more accelerated rate.  However,  the mind- body set up, our character and our social- emotional skills will continue to serve us well.   Skills that will sustain students have more to do with character than facts.  That’s why Social Emotional Learning must become a part of  curriculum.

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Cognitive Yoga -Redeux

Cognitive Yoga will be published on February 15th,  2014, available through Amazon. Cognitive Yoga is packed with useful strategies for any teacher, coach or counselor who works with groups of young adults. It supports teachers who have to transform, bored, bewildered, angry kids into curious, industrious, collaborative students who are invested in their own achievement. Cognitive Yoga draws from the ancient tradition of Advaita Vedanta but brings immediate value to our understanding of the neuroscience of learning, emotional intelligence, and mind/body health.   My apologies to anyone who has tried to buy it before – just another glitch.  [contact-form-7 404 "Not Found"]

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Emotional Intelligence is…

Emotional Intelligence is the art of communicating your truth in a effective and tactful way. It is also receiving another’GidgeWorlds truth without becoming resentful of their awkwardness or style. In a way it listening for the meaning and intention of others not just the words.

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Your authentic self needs a challenge to grow. That’s why service is so important. When we make a little sacrifice by contributing work for the group as we ask the mind to focus on the job, resistance appears.
This resistance is composed of a collection of negative comments that often sound like:’ I’m no good at this, I hate this job, When will this end… I shouldn’t have to do this.’
This is actually identification as the “Doer” of the task who feels exploited . When resistance arises and you tell your authentic self to quietly attend, this set of obstructing ideas dissolves with your coming into the present moment. Generally the present is a simple awareness of the body, hand and mind intelligently guided by the needs of the task itself. The obstructing ideas cover up the sweet contentment that endures just beneath the cloud of resistance. We often think that we bring energy to the job and it drains us. In truth- the body mind responds to the needs in creation inviting us to join the dance and we are energized by our participation.        lee@cognitiveyoga.com


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Time Saving technology

I wanted to listen to Adashahti on Youtube for a little while this morning
So I found Youtube on my husband I pad and it asked that I log in to my account
I put in my E mail and password and then YouTube sent a verification message
to my mobile phone but my mobile phone was in my husband’s car so I didn’t get it
Then I checked the log in to send it to my alternative number at home
I ran to pick up the phone in the kitchen
Heard the message and one finger typed it in… it was wrong.
I forgot the number
Then I got a popup from the popular Youtube videos from “ASAPscience” about how mental practice doing something is nearly as powerful as physically doing something
Well , I liked that article so I tried to log in to facebook but it didn’t log because password and capital letters were out of sync.
Next – I gave up- picked up the book next to me and read a chapter from Adyashanti’s book.
True Meditation.

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Mirror Listening

Mirror Listening

This particular exercise was suggested by Dr. Susan Stillman of Six Seconds. Its usefulness is apparent and the lesson is fairly easy to execute although it requires at least 30 minutes doing a complete round.
The objective of the lesson is to have students observe the dynamics of communication. It contains elements of body language, emotional charge, word choice, tone, pace, inflection, the speaker’s perception and so on. It is a much evolved skill to listen cleanly and objectively.
Tell the class that they are going to doing a “Listening Mirrors “exercise – trying to be a Mirrors or video recording to the students speaking. They are to listen without interrupting the description from student designated as speakers and they need to observe and copy every detail of tone of voice, posture, and pace of words, word choice and emotional intensity. Then divide the class into teams of three students each by counting off: one, two, and three… and so on. In the first round, the students counted as ONE’s speak, TWOs listen, and the THREEs observe for accuracy. Then switch until each has had a turn at the different roles.
Ask the class to think about an event that made them very sad, angry or frustrated. Let the group process and visualize that moment in time for a minute or two. Then give time about 2 minutes for the Speakers to tell their story, 2 minutes for the Listeners to repeat the story, and lastly have the observers give feedback to on the accuracy of the repetition.
Because this lesson can get rather noisy you may want to send kids into corners, or the hallways to do it. Have the observers keep track of the time. Each complete set might be about 12 minutes- moving rather quickly. When the class has regrouped, have one member from each team – share out what they learned, heard or observed… Try to draw some conclusions or principles such as,
“It is important to _____” not change the words”
The tone of voice makes a difference.
An extension of this practice might be that – when a student is not explaining the story well and/or the repetition is not accurate – the observer asks a question to the speaker and or coaches the partners… to clarify the intent, meaning and intensity.

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Freedom in Service

Service provides us with a special kind of freedom. We can detach from the consequences of an action, do our best, perform with attention and love and then release the action back to sumashti. Service requires the unfolding of intelligence, skill and fearlessness. It gives us an opportunity to try new projects, or build pathways into talents and understanding ourselves because as the need presents itself we are invited to develop our capacity for love.

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Practicing Attention – there love arises

When a class is asked to do a hands on project you can practice an attention exercise such as “listen to the sound where the working surfaces meet” or  “watch the hands as they work.”  Any physical task can be used as a meditation especially when it requires hand eye co- ordination.  Projects such as building a boat, a model, gardening, washing dishes and so on can be done in a contemplative way such as “Doing one thing at a time .”

A sanskrit shruti reflects this principal in the following words.

“Where the hand goes, the eye follows; where the eye goes the mind follows; where the mind goes, the heart follows, and thus is born expression.”

“Where the hand goes, the eye goes
Where the eye goes, there the mind follows
Where the mind is, there the heart is also
Where the heart is, there love arises.”
(Nandikesvara – Abhinayadarpanam)

In experience, one usually finds that with careful attention love arises. I am reminded of Ray Bradbury’s classic  short story, The Electric Grandmother who asked, ‘ Love and attention, it’s the same thing isn’t it ? “

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