Thursday, November 16, 2017

CEDER provides educational materials for “Seven Last Words of the Unarmed”

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The Center for Education Design, Evaluation, and Research (CEDER) contributed educational resources to support discussions of “Seven Last Words of the Unarmed,” a choral piece premiered by the U-M Men’s Glee Club and documented by Michigan Media. This collaboration between the Glee Club, composer Joel Thompson, Michigan Media, the Law School, and CEDER is intended to provoke thought. As the Glee Club’s director, Dr. Eugene Rogers, explains, “great art should do more than entertain. Great art should connect you to things that are going on today.”

African-American men killed by police, or people in authority, are the subject of this multi-movement choral work. The documentary about the work is titled Love, Life and Loss, and the accompanying discussion guide touches on issues brought forth in the documentary as well as on background provided by Dr. Margo Schlanger of the U-M Law School.

Dr. Darin Stockdill, CEDER’s Instructional and Program Design Coordinator, created the discussion guide for educators who wish to engage with students about the film and topics such as race and police violence. The guide offers strategies for addressing controversial issues in the classroom as well as a list of questions and additional suggested readings.  Explains Stockdill, “one of our most important roles as educators is to help students learn to think critically about important social issues, including those that have the potential to generate controversy. Our students need support and instruction in order to learn how to participate in constructive dialogue around these issues.”

Resources for high school, university, and community based educators are freely available through the educational resources tab at sevenlastwords.org.

Darin Stockdill is Instructional and Program Design Coordinator

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