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Battle: Change From Within, Curriculum Viewing Guide — Schools, Community and 4-H

This documentary is about educator Eliot Battle and the pivotal role he played in desegregating schools, housing and the Columbia community. As Battle facilitated changes with quiet resolve, he faced resistance from both the black and white communities. His calm demeanor and dedicated work within existing institutions and systems allowed him to bridge the gap between the two races and change Columbia for the better.

Viewing guide for schools

Battle: Cambio Desde AdentroAbout the guide

This study guide presents questions and activities that may be used in school settings to enrich viewers' experience of the documentary. They are aligned with the Missouri Common Core State Reading Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies and the Common Core State Writing Standards for Literacy and History/Social Studies. These standards have been adopted by 45 states. To learn more about the Common Core Standards, see http://www.corestandards.org/assets/CCSSI_ELA%20Standards.pdf.

In addition, these questions and activities are aligned with the following National Thematic Standards for Teachers of Social Studies:

  • Culture and Cultural Diversity
  • Time, Continuity and Change
  • People, Places and Environments
  • Individual Development and Identity
  • Power, Authority and Governance
  • Civic Ideals and Practices

Questions and activities

Choose from the list of questions and activities, depending upon the grade level viewing the film and the time allotment. Questions and activities are appropriate for 6th- to 12th-graders, as well as for those in postsecondary settings.

Leadership and engagement

  1. What is leadership to you? What examples of leadership did you see in this film?
  2. What are some of the leadership characteristics that Dr. Battle embodied?
  3. Dr. Battle talked about "change from within." What do you think that means? How has this philosophy of change influenced change in Columbia?
  4. What does it mean to be a bridge person or to "stand in the gap?"
  5. What civil rights work still needs to occur in your community? What lessons in civic leadership can be learned from Dr. Battle?
  6. How can you influence change in your community?

History

  1. How did the Columbia community's acceptance of desegregation compare with community reaction in Arkansas?
  2. How did the experience of the Battle family compare to societal events that occurred in Missouri and across the United States in the 1960s?
  3. What were some challenges experienced by the Battle children as they integrated schools in Columbia?
  4. How might Dr. Battle be compared to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.?
  5. Segregation was a way to keep people of different races apart. How has the situation changed?
  6. This DVD discussed one type of diversity — race. What are other types of diversity? What diversity exists in your community?

Self-awareness

  1. a. What biases or prejudices do I have about those who are different from me?
    b. What messages have I received — verbal or nonverbal — from home, school, community or society about those who are different from me?
    c. How do I act based on these verbal and nonverbal messages?
    d. How do I keep these feelings from interfering with my work, social life or other responsibilities?
  2. What have I said or done "in innocence" that I later learned hurt or harmed someone else?
  3. Dr. Battle and his family took many risks in the early years. What risks have I taken that have made a difference in my life or in the life of others?
    4. When have I experienced being in the minority? How did I deal with this situation?
    5. What obstacles or barriers have I overcome that have made me feel most proud?
    6. What gifts or talents do I possess that might be used to add value to the world?
    7. How can I be an agent for change?
    8. How do I feel when I give back to others?

Activities

  1. Identify a problem in your community, and develop a public policy or plan of action to help to resolve the issue.
  2. Write from this prompt: Dr. Eliot Battle once said, "I believe that every generation needs to surpass the previous generation."
  3. Define terms such as redlining, orator, segregation, Brown v. Board of Education. Study the history of your school system.
  4. Write a biography about a local hero.
  5. Create an oral history of your community by interviewing local heroes. Integrate technology into your project and prepare to present it.
  6. Create a movie using pictures to tell a story about change.
  7. Invite someone from the community to the class to tell their story about how they created a change for the better.

Pertinent Missouri Common Core State Reading Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies

  • Read closely to determine what a historical text says explicitly and to make logical inferences from it; cite specific textual evidence when writing or speaking to support conclusions drawn from the text.
  • Determine central ideas or themes of a historical text and analyze their development; summarize the key supporting details and ideas.
  • Interpret words and phrases as they are used in a historical text, including determining technical, connotative, and figurative meanings, and analyze how specific word choices shape meaning or tone.
  • Assess how point of view or purpose shapes the content and style of a historical text.
  • Integrate and evaluate content presented in diverse formats and media, including visually and quantitatively, as well as in words.
  • Analyze how two or more historical texts address similar themes or topics in order to build knowledge or to compare the approaches the authors take.

Pertinent Missouri Common Core State Writing Standards for Literacy in History/Social Studies

  • Write arguments to support claims in an analysis of social/historical topics or texts, using valid reasoning and relevant and sufficient evidence.
  • Write informative/explanatory texts to examine and convey complex social/historical ideas and information clearly and accurately through the effective selection, organization, and analysis of content.
  • Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and to interact and collaborate with others.
  • Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects based on focused questions, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • Gather relevant information from multiple print and digital sources, assess the credibility and accuracy of each source, and integrate the information while avoiding plagiarism.
  • Write routinely over extended time frames (time for research, reflection, and revision) and shorter time frames (a single sitting or a day or two) for a range of tasks, purposes and audiences.

Viewing guide for communities

This study guide provides examples of what may be used in community settings to enrich viewers' experience of the documentary. Many of the questions are open-ended so as to stimulate broad and rich discussions that promote peace, understanding, justice, equality and community betterment.

Questions

Choose from the list of questions and activities, depending upon the ages of those viewing the film and the time allotment.

History

  1. How did the Columbia community's acceptance of desegregation compare with community reaction in Arkansas?
  2. How did the experience of the Battle family compare to societal events that occurred in Missouri and across the United States in the 1960s?
  3. What were some of the challenges experienced by the Battle children as they integrated schools in Columbia?
  4. How might Dr. Battle be compared to Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.?
  5. Segregation was a way to keep people of different races apart. How has the situation changed in your community?
  6. This DVD discussed one type of diversity — race. What kind of diversity exists in your community, and what challenges occur as a result of that diversity?

Leadership and engagement

  1. What is community leadership to you? What examples of leadership did you see in this film?
  2. What did it mean to be a bridge person or to "stand in the gap?"
  3. Dr. Battle talked about "change from within." What do you think that means? Does this approach to change work in your community?
  4. What civil rights work still needs to occur in your community? What lessons in civic leadership can be taken from Dr. Battle?
  5. How can you impact change in your community?

Self-awareness

  1. What biases or prejudices do I have about those who are different from me?
  2. What have I said or done "in innocence" that I later learned hurt or harmed someone else?
  3. Dr. Battle and his family took many risks in the early years. What risks have I taken that have made a difference in my community ?
  4. How can I be an agent for change?

Viewing guide for 4-H

This study guide provides examples of what leaders may use in 4-H club or activity settings to enrich viewers' experience of the documentary. Many of the questions are open-ended so as to stimulate broad and rich discussions that promote peace, understanding, justice, equality and community betterment.

Leadership and engagement

  1. Life skills come as a result of your experiences. You carry them with you throughout your life. For example, as you work on a specific 4-H project, you might develop skills such as time management, problem solving or decision making. In groups of three, identify three life skills Dr. Battle developed that were important to his success. What life skills have you developed, and how have they contributed to your success?
  2. In 4-H you are encouraged to be generous with your time by participating in service projects to benefit the community. In what ways did Dr. Battle and his family show a sense of generosity?
  3. In 4-H we strive to make everyone feel welcomed and a part of everything that is 4-H. We call that a sense of belonging. Did the Battle family always have a positive sense of belonging? Share some examples to support your answer.
  4. We want every 4-H member to be able to influence people and events, to make decisions and to act upon those decisions. What are some examples of how the Battle family influenced people or events, or how they made decisions and acted upon them?
  5. Divide the club into groups of four or five. Ask half of the groups to create a skit showing how the club encourages everyone to feel like they belong. Ask the other half to create a skit showing how the club makes people feel like outsiders. Discuss each skit when they are completed.
  6. Do you think the Battle children would have developed such a strong sense of independence had it not been for their caring adults? Why or why not?
  7. Over the years, Dr. Battle has helped many students feel capable. Think about some of the interviews in the DVD. What were some of the examples given?
  8. Dr. Battle talked about "change from within." What do you think that means?

History

  1. Segregation was a way to keep people of different races apart. How has the situation changed? Discuss.
  2. Did your community experience segregation in the 1950s and 1960s? Who in the community could you invite to an upcoming club meeting to discuss experiences of segregation?
  3. Do you think 4-H was segregated in the 1950s and 1960s? Why or why not?
  4. This DVD discussed one type of diversity — race. What are other types of diversity? What diversity exists in your community?

Self-awareness

  1. Dr. Battle "gave back" to his community. How do I feel when I give back to others? What are some examples of when I gave back?
  2. Do I think everyone who is a part of 4-H feels like they belong? Why or why not?
  3. What can I, the club, council or committees do to help everyone feel like they belong?

About 4-H

The 4-H Center for Youth Development is part of University of Missouri Extension. 4-H strives to help young people in acquiring knowledge, developing life skills, and forming attitudes that will enable them to become self-directed, productive members of society. The 4-H motto is "Make the best better."

Curriculum guide committee members

  • Julie Middleton, Director of Organizational Development, University of Missouri Extension
  • Barbara Williamson, Associate Teaching Professor, Department of Educational, School, and Counseling Psychology, University of Missouri College of Education
  • Mary Jo Williams, Associate State Specialist, 4-H Center for Youth Development, University of Missouri Extension
  • Nick Kramer, Social Studies Department, Columbia Public Schools
  • Eryca Neville, Principal, Douglass High School, Columbia Public Schools
  • Abbey Trescott, Art Teacher, Rock Bridge High School, Columbia Public Schools

MP926, revised July 2014


MP926 Battle: Change From Within, Curriculum Viewing Guide — Schools, Community and 4-H | University of Missouri Extension