Day of Learning 2015

On March 13, 2015, Facing History and Ourselves, together with our partner Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, hosted the third annual Day of Learning. The theme: Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate starts with the question, “How do we learn to participate?" When the journey from empathy to action is a complicated one, what dispositions must we, as educators, cultivate to encourage young people to participate responsibly in contemporary society?

This live-streamed and live-tweeted event brought together participants and scholars from across academic disciplines, professions, and geography to discuss how we nurture in students the qualities that lead to leadership, action, and upstanding behavior.

The presentation recordings below are in order of the day’s agenda. Watch them now!

Theme: Learning from History

Watch Martha Minow: Levers of Power

Martha Minow, the Morgan and Helen Chu Dean and Professor of Law at Harvard University, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” Minow leads a discussion about the levers of power that impacted both successful and unsuccessful social movements. Follow along using the Levers of Power worksheet

Read Martha Minow's Bio

Watch Anthony Appiah: Honor and Social Change

Anthony Appiah, Professor of Philosophy and Law at New York University and Chair of the Facing History Board of Scholars, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” Appiah describes and defines the concept of honor, and how it can be used to bring about social change.

Read Anthony Appiah's Bio

Theme: Seeking Good - Exploring How Young People Navigate the Dilemmas of Participation

Watch Lynn Barendsen: Reflecting on Responsibility

Lynn Barendsen, Project Manager at Project Zero at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” Barendsen discusses some of her work on The Good Project, including understanding how to deal with conflicting responsibilities and how and why people define to whom and what they are responsible in their work.

Read Lynn Barendsen's Bio

Watch Carrie James: Participation in a Digital World

Carrie James, Research Director and Principal Investigator at Project Zero and Lecturer on Education at the Harvard Graduate School of Education, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” By citing examples from her research on how young people use technology and social media, James explores how living in a digital world impacts our sense of responsibility towards others.

Read Carrie James' Bio

Theme: Cultivating Dispositions & Creating a Toolbox for Social Change

Watch Rebecca Hamilton: Fighting Global Injustice

Rebecca Hamilton, journalist and human rights scholar based at Columbia Law School, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” Hamilton describes her own journey in working against global injustice, and explains that any action taken in the fight against injustice must be considered as part of an ongoing process of learning that leads to more informed action.

Read Rebecca Hamilton's Bio

Watch Ethan Zuckerman: Building Movements and Affecting Change

Ethan Zuckerman, Director of the Center for Civic Media at MIT and principal research scientist at the MIT Media Lab, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” Zuckerman illustrates some new ways in which young people are participating and trying to affect change, and discusses how to most effectively build movements.

Read Ethan Zuckerman's Bio

Watch Doris Sommer: Artists and Social Change

Doris Sommer, Director of the Cultural Agents Initiative at Harvard University, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” Sommer explains how artists from around the globe have used their work to affect change.

Read Doris Sommer's Bio

Watch Sandra Arnold: Remembering the Past

Sandra Arnold, founder and Executive Director of the Periwinkle Initiative, delivers a talk at Facing History and Ourselves’ Day of Learning “Thought, Judgment, Action: Choosing to Participate.” Arnold describes learning about her family’s history of slavery, and explains how this new knowledge inspired her to take action to document the burial sites of former enslaved people in the United States.

Read Sandra Arnold's Bio

Theme: Choosing to Participate

Day of Learning 2015 wrapped up with an open discussion on the theme of “Choosing to Participate” following a excerpt from the critically acclaimed PBS special Not in Our Town. This excerpt tells the uplifting story of how the residents of Billings, Montana, joined together to combat a series of hate crimes in 1993.

 

This excerpt from "Not In Our Town"  ©1995 California Working Group, Inc.

Explore Past Years' Day of Learning

2014 Day of Learning: Confronting Evil in Individuals and Societies

The 2014 Day of Learning, “Confronting Evil in Individuals and Societies,” features presentations from scholars on the forefront of research on the nature of evil in individuals and societies, shedding on the enduring question, “Why do humans engage in evil and what can we do to confront it?”

View the 2014 Day of Learning presentations.

2013 Day of Learning: Reimagining Self and Other

The 2013 Day of Learning, “Reimagining Self and Other,” brought together scholars, historians, political scientists, and sociologists to discuss insights into the way we think about difference and how the brain works when considering who is “us” and who is “them.”

View the 2013 Day of Learning presentations.

 

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