DEADLIEST MASS SHOOTING IN THE USA

On October 1st 2017, a new shooting took place in Las Vegas:  A gunman Stephen Paddock killed more than 50 people and wounded at least 500 others. Here’s the Cnn report. That shooting is only the last of a long series of massacres.  See  Voices of America’s report.

“An average of one mass shooting happened every day in the U.S. in 2015”, the New York Times reported. Here you can see the timeline  history of mass shooting. I feel horrified at such long history of violence. It’s about time they took some measures!

Gun Debate After several mass shootings in the United States, President Barack Obama and Congressional Democrats again renewed calls for stricter gun control measures.

They called for changes to current laws that permit people to purchase guns without a background check. They also want to bar (preclude, prohibit) people on the U.S. government’s No Fly List” from buying guns. The list contains names of people suspected of having connections to terrorist groups.“If you’re too dangerous to board a plane, you’re too dangerous to buy a gun,” said Democratic Senator Dianne Feinstein of California. ”

Obama pledged for new gun rules and the article in the New York Times Guns Are Our Shared Responsibility was written by him. Let’s read & listen to the article from VOA and watch the video of an emotional Obama. 
This contemporary issue is related  to the movie Bowling for Columbine by Michael Moore we’re going to watch together in class.

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  • How does this ad make you feel? Do you think certain commercials could contribute to change people’s attitude towards the possession of guns?

Here you can find some DATA regarding gun violence in the USA: Gun Violence Archive so that you can compare it to the rest of the world in a visual way. Mass shooting visual guide by CNNIsn’t it appalling? Did you expect it to be so bad?

Some people even believe that teachers should come to school armed in order to protect their pupils.

How would that “me” make you feel? 

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I took the next photo in July 2014 in Boston at the  “finish line” of the marathon in Boylston Street and it’s the site where During the Boston Marathon on April 15, 2013, two pressure cooker bombs exploded at 2:49 pm, killing 3 people and injuring an estimated 264 others.The bombs exploded about 13 seconds and 210 yards (190 m) apart. This is what you see now, all those colored fabrics to  commemorate that tragedy … it’s really touching.

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I’m also adding a photo I took in Charlotte inside the elevator of our hotel, right downtown in the very center of the city. It made me feel really uncomfortable and for the first time I actually “felt” how totally different our gun culture is from the America one.

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Before devoting our next session to the movie and the discussion I’d like you to read a CNNiReport I wrote two years ago, following a shooting at Costal Carolina UniversityI went to visit that University and it’s pretty close to where my son was studying so I couldn’t help feeling emotionally involved.

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gunsstatesI want to add two interesting TedTalks. In the first Sue Klebold  the mother of Dylan Klebold, one of the two shooters who committed the Columbine High School massacre, murdering 12 students and a teacher, explores the intersection between mental health and violence, advocating for parents and professionals to continue to examine the link between suicidal and homicidal thinking.

 

 

 

The next is the Talk by Dan Gross, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, who makes a passionate, personal appeal for something that more than 90 percent of Americans want: background checks for all gun sales.

 

 

 

During our next lesson be ready to share your impressions and ideas with the rest of the class using your written notes. 

5CLIN MAD SHELLEY

Year after year, when I face the decision of whether to deal with one particular author or poet rather than a more modern or contemporary one, I question myself on the real validity of teaching the classics instead of focusing on the contemporary writers. Well, I’ve reached, once more, the conclusion that in moments of great crisis we can find inspiration  in Poetry and we can look for comfort in the words of great men from the past who suffered like us and fought against tyrannies and injustices the way we try to. I firmly believe that studying literature and a poet like P.B.Shelley can help us cope with sorrow and believe in the possibility of rebirth and change. His fascinating figure and works have so much to teach us!

Therefore I decided to present this troubled and fascinating man in class creating an Emaze presentation, with the aim of conveying my passion for his poetry while interacting with you, my dear students.

Here’s the presentation Powered by emaze

To Flip the Classroom (what a paradox eh!) I’ve also decided to create a video from it, to help you study, revise for the exam and also for the ones who were absent. Hope you’ll appreciate my commitment. The video is too long, I know, and it’s taken me ages to do it; had to redo it several times due to Dream, my dog, jumping on me barking 🙂 or the telephone ringing and other funny incidents.

Therefore split it in two: during your session 1 stop after the video with the “Ode to the West Wind” at minute 13.17. During second session watch the second part.

Well, last but not least, as I was discussing with a colleague and friend of mine, I somehow object to this “teacher-centered approach”. Nevertheless, in a context where the other teachers mainly lecture with frontal lessons and the students have to study 4 or 5 subjects for the following day,  I have to use a “soft blended” approach and cannot push Flipping to the limit nor turn everything upside down. 😉

Feel free to leave a comment for future improvements.Thanks!