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Ten Years After Arab Spring

North Africa — ten years after the Arab Spring began in Tunisia — faces economic, social and political uncertainty. The region’s history, geography and culture are the backdrop for new relations and contemporary strivings for a voice, fair government and economic stability. Students are introduced to the five countries through maps, photographs, videos, news and commentary.

NIE Curriculum Guides

News, features, guest commentaries, graphs and photographs give snapshots of life in the first months of the novel coronavirus, primarily in the U.S. Study questions, activities and suggestions for interaction aid students to understand the basics of virology, read data, reflect and express themselves through word, art and music — defining life in the time of novel coronavirus.

There is always change, but 2020 was a year of extraordinary changes — global deaths due to a pandemic, marches for racial equality and justice, name changes of schools and teams, a woman of Indian and Jamaican heritage on the Democratic ticket, NASA’s return to space shuttles — and mundane curtailments that influenced culture. Students read, discuss and debate, and write about these changes and those who made a difference.

“Rhetoric,” “misinformation,” “disinformation” and a flood of words related to the pandemic, campaigns and social media dominate the press and conversations. Lexicographers choose “lockdown” as their 2020 word of the year because of its “unifying experience for billions of people across the world.” Planet Word opens, Tom Toles retires, and The Post makes a Black and White decision. We focus on language —composed of words new and archaic. Words changing denotations and connotations, adjectives coloring the characters and scenes writers paint, words sharing roots and expressing unique cultures. Always reflecting character.

President Trump refused to concede and rallied his followers in tweets and speeches. President-elect Joe Biden, in spite of attempts to delay the transition, established a transition team, began naming nominees for Cabinet positions and worked with the Joint Congressional Committee on Inaugural Ceremonies for a peaceful and safe transition of power. Then came June 6, 2021.

 

Campaign 2016

Campaign 2016 provides avenues for diverse study. At the foundation are candidates’ speeches, actions and policies, and party platforms. Understanding polls and their influence, analyzing political cartoons and political ads and using social media form another strand of study. Considering bellwether Indiana towns and a Virginia town that lacks enough candidates to run for office, defining issues and using original documents offer more challenges for students.