Native Americans as grand-coders (LS-PL-65)

Context

This scenario is a part of a multidisciplinary lesson series “Coding – then and now” combining English (ESL) and IT classes. The series focuses on various types of communicating and coding throughout centuries – from the first human tribes up until nowadays’ technological solutions.

The scenario is intended for English (ESL) students aged 12-15 and deals with History and culture of Native Americans (American Indians) and the way they conversed both verbally and non-verbally. By the end of the lesson students will get familiar with how Native Americans communicated before the US was established, and, what is more, pupils will learn various ways of coding and communicating. Moreover, students will get some background for further lessons of the series which will help teenagers develop critical thinking. Thanks to searching for information on the Internet, the pupils will learn how to use digital tools safely and productively.

Europeana and Native Americans’ culture

Europeana appeared to be a valuable source of information on Native Americans’ culture. While browsing, the students came up with even more ideas on how Indians could communicate and some of the pupils decided to do deeper research on the topic after the lesson. Europeana itself was something new for all the students and that is why it was necessary for the teacher to explain how to use it effectively.

Activities during the lesson

The students were very excited about the idea of calling Indians “coders” and transferring coding known nowadays to the past. It was great fun for the pupils to create their own Indian names as well as search for information about Native Americans on the Internet.

Working in groups made the students learn how to communicate and cooperate with each other. Moreover, the pupils had the opportunity to move their imagination. Indeed, they showed how creative they could be having no limits in inventing their own Indian character. This activity enabled all students to show their talents as they had to use various skills to make their projects. Such activities are very important in the term of individualization in teaching and lead to the feeling of influence on the learning process of students. The displayed sketches appeared to be interesting for other students (not taking part in the lesson) and parents as well. This encouraged some of them to explore the topic on their own and share their knowledge with each other.

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CC BY 4.0 – The featured image used to illustrate this article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution. It can be found on Wellcome collection. The image has been resized and labelled to illustrate this article. To find the original image click here.

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