USC CALIS forums

Full Version: Period 2 - Tia Shackeroff-Reiser
You're currently viewing a stripped down version of our content. View the full version with proper formatting.
Thank you for participating in TIRP service-learning outreach!

Your reports are the basis for academic credit.  Whether or not you are seeking a credit option, reports are required as a university record of service-learning efforts and impact in local schools.

Required Format:
Session 1 materials: [The first line of your report is the session number and full title of the database item(s).]
Focus Q: [On a new line, list your focus question from your TAP form. If you changed the question then add the new version after the TAP version.]
*** For the minimum of 3 student specifics, do not refer to students by name; instead call them Student A, B or C.
*** For the minimum of 500 words, guiding questions are here:

Use clear paragraph structure. If you include too much focus on the step-by-step process of the lesson rather than substance, you may be asked to revise your report.
*** The webboard is public. If you include names, commentary or observations, you will need to revise your post.

To Post:
1. For each report, select Post Reply.  (Do not select New Topic)
2. Copy/paste from your Word file and save a copy until after the semester is over.
3. Before pasting, confirm that you have met the minimum of at least 500 words.
4. Each report must be submitted by midnight within 3 calendar days after each session.

A CALIS staff member will review your report each week and post a message below of the scoring for your performance evaluation.
We welcome any questions or concerns you have about scoring.

Session #1
On time: 0/3
Substantive: 6/6
Student Specific: 5/6
Total: 11/15
Thank you for your report! I enjoyed reading about the different perspectives of the student groups.
-PS, 11/21

Session #2
On Time: 0/3
Substantive: 6/6
Student Specifics: 5/6
Total: 11/15
Awesome report! I particularly enjoyed the way you guys tweaked the simulation; it seems to have made it more thought provoking.
-PS, 11/21

On Time: 0/3
Substantive: 6/6
Student Specifics: 6/6
Total: 12/12
Great report! You guys seem to have adapted really quickly to the situation despite things not going according to plan
-PS, 11/21

Session #4
On Time 0/3
Substantive: 6/6
Student Specifics: 6/6
Total: 12/12
Thank you for report! I'm happy to hear that the students have a better grasp of foreign policy now!
-PS, 11/21
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Session 1: 0142 Four Worlds: Social Science Factors & 0079 Foreign Policy and National Attributes: Domestic Sources of Foreign Policy[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Questions: What is foreign policy and why should we care about it? What connections to the international community might you have? [/font][/size]

[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]For our first session, we introduced the four worlds because it would form the basis of the rest of our sessions, as well as get the students to think about what they would consider in our in-class activities. Because there were both familiar and unfamiliar concepts on the Four World sheet, this activity served to both bring the concepts closer to home as well as allow them to explore more abstract concepts. Overall, I felt like there was a good understanding of the Four Worlds from the beginning. I think it was a good precursor to the lessons we had in the future which would be informed by the basis of the Four Worlds. While the three of us floated around the room, we helped students organize the concepts into the Four Worlds. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]During the discussion time, Student A asked me what world education belonged to. The students in their group had made good arguments for multiple worlds based on their own experiences and patterns they saw in society. Many of the students in that group talked about education’s effect on the economy and how being educated could lead to greater economic mobility through higher paying jobs. They also brought up that much of their social life was informed by being in school and that they learned how to act within society because of it. We talked as a group about why they had differing opinions, and even though the activity seems to delineate the individual concepts very clearly into the four worlds, I think what was most helpful here was the message that foreign policy is not as simple as to have one application per topic. In other words, through this activity, the students were able to see that one interest might have effects on a number of aspects of society, which is something that we planned on incorporating throughout the rest of the sessions. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]After this, we split the class into small groups for the Domestic Sources of Foreign Policy simulation. For this exercise, we divided the students into small groups and assigned each group a country, providing them with the respective country bios from the simulation. As a class, we reviewed key vocabulary and distinguished developing countries from developed countries. We instructed the students to read their country bios, determine the category their country fell into, and keep that in mind for the upcoming simulation.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]During the simulation, we presented a scenario and asked the students to collaborate in groups to formulate their country's policy. The first scenario involved Interpol cracking down on drug trafficking. While developing their policies, students were prompted to consider whether their country would support the Interpol policy, comply with investigations, and assess if the investigation unfairly targeted their country.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]While we helped individual groups with their policies, Student B from the USA group considered their relationship with Mexico as they decided to support or not. Student C from the DRC group cited the country’s instability as a reason to not support the policy. They agreed that introducing law enforcement to a country already facing conflict would only incite more unrest.  [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Overall, this session was a good primer for the students because they got to think about foreign policy as it applies to both their personal experiences and to the interests of states. I was pleasantly surprised at how engaged the majority of students were with the material and how much they absorbed themselves into their given roles during the simulation. They answered the questions we gave and asked questions of their own, which made me optimistic for the sessions to come, as well as relieve some of my anxiety surrounding them. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif] [/font][/size]

[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Session 2: 0007 International Priorities, video explaining realism and liberalism, slideshow explaining terms[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Questions:  How do different worldviews shape decision-making on an international level? [/font][/size]

[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]For this class, we explored another facet of foreign policy while building upon the tools introduced in the previous week. I was optimistic because the students seemed to enjoy the previous simulation so I thought they would like this one as well. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]We began with key vocabulary that would be useful for this and proceeding sessions. We would use them as a framework to explain how global actors develop worldviews and interests. This included system maintainers, reformers, and transformers; unilateral, bilateral, and multilateral to describe the number of actors; and the different kinds of aid that we would later focus on during the activity. While the concepts of system maintainers, reformers, and transformers were unclear at first, Hayden broke down the meanings by asking for laymen definitions. Student A mentioned that maintain meant to ‘keep as is”, which we then used a real-life example as well as an IR example to expand upon. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]To incorporate multimedia elements, we projected a 3-minute video that outlined the concepts of liberalism and realism. Seeking to reinforce understanding, we encouraged students to explain the concepts in their own terms. For realism, Student B mentioned that realist groups would not like to work with other countries because they don’t trust them. The three of us jumped to highlight that concept because it was so integral to realism as well as other core facets of IR studies. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Subsequently, we transitioned to the simulation. Similar to the previous week, we organized students into small groups, assigning each a specific group and worldview. We provided around 5 minutes for independent research to determine their group's stance, whether maintainers, reformers, transformers, realists, or liberalists, and the likelihood of pursuing unilateral, bilateral, or multilateral action.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]The simulation involved groups deciding the type and amount of aid they wanted to provide to different countries facing various situations. We explained various aid types, such as project, program, technical, food, specific, and military aid. To underscore the importance of priorities, we tweaked the simulation, requiring groups to decide on aid for each country before allocating a budget of 200 million, which fell short of the total requested amount of 390 million. This compelled them to make strategic decisions on which countries to underfund or not fund.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]When I went around to the groups, I helped Student C in the New Internationalists group. Although they were a bit confused at first, I got them to understand their viewpoint better by relating it to the discussions we had earlier in the session. By breaking it down into easier to grasp concepts, they had a much better understanding of where they wanted to allocate their funds. Some members of the group pushed to keep the funds to themselves, but I explained that in order to make the changes that they want to the system in the way that they want them, they would have to use their allotted budget to address their concerns. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Once again, this activity emphasized that there is no one right answer when it comes to policymaking and balancing various interests. After we wrote the countries on the board and how much each group was giving them, it was apparent that there was a wide range of perspectives, ranging from indifference to blatant dislike. Some of the groups explained their viewpoints well, and it sounded like they were grasping the concepts really well.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]While there was a level of silliness in some of the groups’ decisions, I believe this helped them stay engaged and make the lesson more memorable for themselves by really engaging with the activity.[/font][/size]

[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Session 3: 0686 The Human Security Agenda: How Secure Are You?, video with brief overview of human security[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Questions: How secure do you feel, and what factors influence those perceptions?[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]I came into this class with enthusiasm because of how successful the other two sessions were. This was the lesson plan that I created, so I was a bit nervous about whether or not my ideas would pan out well. Because the simulation activities seemed to have the most interest from the class, I made a simulation based on the materials that we were given. I was unsure about timing and if the plan had a good flow from one activity to another. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Our plan was to begin by showcasing a video explaining the different forms of human security. I feel like it did a good job of relating to the previous material so we intended to draw connections to theory and perspective in international relations and foreign policy. Following the video, our plan was to expand on the various types of security, fostering discussion in pairs or small groups with prepared discussion questions that tied in those concepts. Subsequently, we would introduce examples of each security type and divide the students into small groups, tasking them with ranking the different security types on a continuum from 1 to 10, with 1 being extremely unimportant and 10 being the most important. The ultimate goal was to create a collective continuum by averaging everyone's responses. I had also planned a simulation based on the different kinds of human security, with groups being assigned to a security and selecting from a list of given issues and expounding upon how their security relates to them.  [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Upon entering the classroom, it became apparent that the session might not unfold as smoothly as the preceding weeks. Although I had emailed this session’s slides to the teacher in advance, it had not been communicated to us that there would be sub during this lesson. Consequently, we had to forgo displaying the video on the screen, opting for the students to watch it in small groups on their Chromebooks, which posed challenges in attention and participation. Additionally, it had been communicated to the students that they would have a free class period which diminished overall engagement and enthusiasm during the session. Student A, who had always been an active participant in previous sessions, broke the silence, somewhat influencing others to participate.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Because we had difficulty receiving answers for the discussion questions, this segment of the lesson took longer than anticipated. Subsequently, we transitioned to the continuum which was loosely simulation inspired. Students were grouped and tasked with envisioning their priorities as world leaders. They were then required to independently rank the types of security on individual continuums, engaging in group debates to determine the placement of each type.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]We circulated to assist them in making decisions and discerning between the various security types. During this time, I stopped by Student B, who had always done the individual work but not the class discussions. Because students weren’t participating as much, I decided to ask them about their thoughts in an attempt to create a group dialogue. With Student C, who was in another group, I talked about security in the US context. I applied personal security to the George Floyd protests and economic security to minimum wage. This helped get them to participate.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]The concluding task involved creating a group continuum. To establish an "average," students raised their hands as we progressively narrowed down the ranking for each type. What was interesting was that none of the securities were ranked below a 5, indicating that the students viewed all types of security as interconnected and significant. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Because I had planned to have a wrap-up simulation activity, I didn’t feel like we had a strong enough message at the end of the session, even though I think students were able to gain an understanding of security in an IR context. I was a little disheartened by the lack of enthusiasm, but at the same time, I would have been unenthused if my free period suddenly turned into a work period. Despite our visually engaging lesson plan having to pivot to being more analog due to the lack of projector capabilities, I think we managed to drive home some key points and relate them to the themes we had been exploring previously as well. [/font][/size]

[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Session 4: 0286 NPR: Jordan Accused of Harboring Sweatshop Factories[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Questions: What should the international community do about slave labor and human trafficking? How do international labor standards get set and enforced?[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Although this week we planned to do an NPR article, Mia created a simulation surrounding it to hopefully engage students more than the previous session. The plan was to play an NPR audio clip for the students, followed by a segment where they would answer questions and engage in a think-pair-share activity. For the simulation component, we placed them in small groups with half adopting the perspectives of countries and the other half assuming the roles of NGOs. This approach would combine out previous simulations and illustrate the collaboration between countries and NGOs.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Before playing the NPR audio, we introduced key vocabulary, such as "sweatshop." After providing explanations for this and other relevant terms, we proceeded to play the audio. Following the audio segment, Hayden and I facilitated the question-and-answer section. Hayden in particular described economic policies such as protectionism and how measures like tariffs interact with pricing in foreign countries, most notably a race to the bottom. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Students were given time to respond to the questions, and we encouraged them to share their thoughts. The students incorporated our previous discussions of alliances, which I was thrilled to hear. For example, Student B set the focus of the discussion on how if the US were to pursue harsher legislation on sweatshops, Jordan, a key US ally may be negatively affected. This became a key factor in many of the groups’ discussions thereafter.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]After the discussion questions, we moved on to the simulation. Having previously explored the perspectives of countries and interest groups, we focused on the interaction between the two. Half of the groups were assigned a country, and the remaining groups assumed the role of an NGO. We allotted time for them to research their assigned country or NGO, gaining perspectives on sweatshops, slave labor, and foreign intervention. Subsequently, they were tasked with formulating their own policy. Considerations included whether their country/NGO would attempt to intervene, which NGOs they would seek funding from, and what NGOs the countries would fund. These and other questions prompted thorough contemplation.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]After developing their policies, we paired each country group with an NGO group, and they both had to present their policies and listen to the counterpart's stance. They then considered how that policy correlated with theirs. The next step involved crafting an agreement offer, followed by a joint discussion and the formulation of a counteroffer. The ultimate aim was to arrive at a final agreement through compromise. Student B was earnest in this effort, but didn’t know where to start. We went over the interests of their NGO and how that would align with their partner country, the US. After outlining the interests, they agreed on a policy that involved funding audits to monitor working conditions in Jordanian factories. This would eliminate the issue of trafficking foreign labor to another production plant should their initial one get shut down.[/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]During the class discussion, each country-NGO pair presented impressive policies that reflected real policies. Student C was a bit hesitant to put forth a price floor on imported goods, but Hayden was quick to explain that they are a policy that countries employ in real life. The students explained themselves well during the discussion, and even incorporated more themes from previous sessions. It was fitting for the last class. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]We had a little time left over to have a short Q&A about college and careers and to my surprise they asked well thought out questions and showed a lot of enthusiasm. I was delighted because even when I was a senior I didn’t know to ask those kinds of questions like they were. This helped end the class on a personal and positive note and I hope it inspired them in some capacity. [/font][/size]
[size=1][font=Arial, sans-serif]Throughout the four sessions, I think that the students came to understand that while foreign policy may not be black or white, it can be easily understood if you relate it to your own life and try to embody actors with various interests. I think that they embraced the lessons and learned a lot of things that would have been useful to know as a freshman IR major. I’m glad we could bring some of these concepts down to earth. I also gained some confidence while teaching for TIRP and learned a lot from my partners as well. [/font][/size]