Dalai Lama: Free Expression and Religion

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Dalai Lama

Dalai Lama, ©2000 Eddie Adams

LESSON GRADE LEVEL:

  • 9-12

HUMAN RIGHTS ISSUES:

  • Free Expression; Religious Freedom

Additional Resources
- Profile
- PDF
- Video

UNIVERSAL DECLARATION OF HUMAN RIGHTS:

Article: 18: Freedom of belief and religion

GUIDING QUESTION:

What happens when you are not able to practice your religion?

TIME REQUIREMENT:

Minimum 40 minutes, maximum 120 minutes

OBJECTIVES:

After this lesson, students will be able to

  • Understand the conflict between China and Tibet.
  • Understand the concept of free expression/religious freedom and Article 18 from the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.
  • Explain the Dalai Lama’s message of non-violence and explore their own beliefs on non-violence as a solution to conflict.

STUDENT SKILLS:

  • Finding information
  • Citing sources
  • Inquiry and critical thinking
  • Group discussion
  • Presentation skills and multimedia use

NEW YORK STATE LEARNING STANDARDS:

  • English Language Arts Standard 1: Language for Information and Understanding
    • Commencement Reading PI 1, 2, 3, 4, 6; Writing PI 1, 2, 3, 4
  • English Language Arts Standard 3: Language for Critical Analysis and Evaluation
    • Commencement Reading PI 1, 2, 3, 4; Writing PI 1, 2
  • Social Studies Standard 2: World History
    • Commencement KI I PI 1, 2, 3, 4, 5; KI 2 PI 2, 3, 4, 5; KI 3 PI 1, 2, 3; KI 4 PI 1, 2, 3, 4
  • Social Studies Standard 5: Civics, Citizenship, and Government
    • Commencement KI 1 PI 1, 4; KI 4 PI 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7

NYS P-12 COMMON CORE LEARNING STANDARDS in ELA/Literacy for History/Social Studies 6-12:

  • RH/SS.9-10.5 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, attending to such features as the date and origin of the information.
  • RH/SS.9-10.1 Analyze how a text uses structure to emphasize key points or advance an explanation or analysis.
  • WH/SS.9-10.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • WH/SS.9-10.9 Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
  • RH/SS.11-12.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, connecting insights gained from specific details to an understanding of the text as a whole.
  • RH/SS.11-12.7 Integrate and evaluate multiple sources of information presented in diverse formats and media (e.g., visually, quantitatively, as well as in words) in order to address a question or solve a problem.
  • WH/SS.11-12.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • WH/SS.11-12.9 Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
  • Juliana Dogbadzi
  • NYS P-12 Common Core Learning Standards for ELA/Literacy in History/Social Studies 6-12
  • RH/SS.9-10.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, attending to such features as the date and origin of the information.
  • WH/SS.9-10.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • WH/SS.9-10.9 Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.
  • RH/SS.11-12.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources, connecting insights gained from specific details to an understanding of the text as a whole.
  • RH/SS.11-12.7 Integrate and evaluate multiple sources of information presented in diverse formats and media (e.g., visually, quantitatively, as well as in words) in order to address a question or solve a problem.
  • WH/SS.11-12.7 Conduct short as well as more sustained research projects to answer a question (including a self-generated question) or solve a problem; narrow or broaden the inquiry when appropriate; synthesize multiple sources on the subject, demonstrating understanding of the subject under investigation.
  • WH/SS.11-12.9 Draw evidence from informational texts to support analysis, reflection, and research.

VOCABULARY:

  • Religious freedom
  • Tibet
  • China
  • Non-violence
  • Buddhism
  • Compassion
  • Intolerance

TECHNOLOGY REQUIRED:

  • Internet access and computers for student research.
  • Interactive whiteboard if available (for presentations and viewing video) or LCD projector, computer and screen.

MATERIALS:

Student Activities

ANTICIPATORY SET:

Teacher will ask students to read the PBS online passage on religious freedom and how it relates to Tibet. Students will gain the background knowledge necessary to understand the conflict in Tibet and also create a personal response on the theme of non-violence.

ACTIVITY 1:

  • Divide the students into small groups.
  • Pass out the interview with the Dalai Lama (symbol for link)
  • Assign students the reading on the Dalai Lama.
  • Show the video on the Dalai Lama to the students.
  • After reading the interview and viewing the video ask students to craft a response in the form of a group presentation to the following guiding questions:
    • What is the main conflict between China and Tibet and how did it begin?
    • Who is the Dalai Lama?
    • Explain his message on non-violence as a response to the conflict in Tibet.
    • Instruct the students to include supporting details from at least one source (other than the materials in class) to support your response.
  • The classroom teacher will provide a rubric to the students to explain how the presentation will be evaluated.
  • After completing their research, students will prepare a presentation in one of the following formats to convey their responses to the guiding questions:
    • Multimedia presentation PowerPoint, video, website, etc.
    • Group oral presentation.
    • Students must cite each source that they use in their presentation. After each group presents, they will field questions from the class on their presentation and provide a form for their peers to evaluate their presentation.

BECOME A DEFENDER

The Dalai Lama often speaks about compassion for others and using non-violence as a way to respond to conflict. After reading about the events in Tibet, and learning about other regions in conflict across the globe, do you think non-violence can produce a positive outcome?

  • On the personal level think about the times you have been tempted to resolve a personal conflict by using some sort of violence and how that conflict could have been addressed in a non-violent manner. Also, think about how you can personally intervene in an escalating conflict between others using non-violent techniques.
  • Pay attention to the news and pinpoint key stories where non-violent methods have been used to resolve conflicts. The response can be in a format that the student decides is best to convey his/her response. For example, a poem, short essay, art project, or video that is disseminated among classmates, the school and beyond.
  • On the local level are there any efforts that are being carried out by the government, community groups or non-governmental organizations to resolve conflicts in your neighborhood or community. Interview people on all sides of the story, find out their thoughts the conflict and possible repercussions if the conflict is not resolved.
  • On the national level and global level ask yourself if your government is doing the best it can to help resolve violent or potentially violent conflicts around the world. Find out what independent agencies and advocacy groups are doing to assist in preventing or resolving a conflict. And what is the media doing in your country to investigate and report areas of pending or ongoing conflict. If you believe that not enough is being done in your own country, contact either the government entities responsible, advocacy groups or your government representative, Congressman or Senator, to find out what is being done to resolve the pending or ongoing conflict peacefully. Contact them and either help to promote their work or criticize their work by writing to a newspaper. Discuss with your classmates some of the hot spots of conflict in the world and how these conflicts could be resolved by non-violent means.

TELL US ABOUT IT

The Robert F. Kennedy Center for Justice and Human Rights is sponsoring an annual contest honoring a student who submits the best advocacy activity based upon the lesson studied. A goal of the lesson is to instill into each student that one voice, one person can make monumental changes in the lives of many. Tell us how you “Became a Defender”!

THE CRITERIA FOR THE CONTEST ARE:

  • A one-page summary of the advocacy activity
  • Digitized copies of materials that can be sent electronically
  • Photos of the activity (please include parental consent form)
  • A one-page summary of how the activity made a change in the lives of one person or many

THE PRIZES INCLUDE:

  • A week long “virtual” internship at RFK Center
  • An opportunity to meet the defender through a SKYPE visit,
  • A visit from Kerry Kennedy or a defender to your school
  • A poster of a Speak Truth to Power Human Rights Defender
  • A donation of a signed copy of Speak Truth to Power for the school library

The application and instructions for entry can be downloaded here (link for materials)

The deadline for all applications is the third week in November.

The winning student and teacher will be notified by the last week of January.

Additional Resources

Dalai Lama Web site
http://www.dalailama.com/
The Dalai Lama’s personal site with numerous links to his teachings, messages as well as a wealth of video and audio from His Holiness.

Central Tibetan Administration
http://www.tibet.net/en/index.php
This is the official website of the current government of Tibet. It features information about current issues in Tibet and also serves as a portal for news from other sources as well.

Dalai Lama Foundation
http://www.dalailamafoundation.org/dlf/en/index.jsp
The Dalai Lama’s personal foundation, established in 2002, that works to promote education about the importance of ethics and peace.

Background on the Dalai Lama
http://www.lucidcafe.com/library/96jul/dalailama.html
A biography and set of resources about the Dalai Lama

International Center on Nonviolent Conflict
http://www.nonviolent-conflict.org/
Extensive and frequently updated source for news about current and ongoing nonviolent conflict and explanations of the concepts of non-violence.

Martin Luther King, Jr.’s 6 Facts About Non-Violent Resistance
http://www.care2.com/greenliving/martin-luther-king-six-facts.html
A good and simple introduction to non-violent resistance from one of its most famous proponents.

Nonviolence International
http://nonviolenceinternational.net/
An NGO that focuses on promoting non-violence with a great introduction to the principles of non-violence.

Non-Violent Struggle
http://www.colorado.edu/conflict/peace/treatment/nonviolc.htm
Page from University of Colorado with a great list of examples of non-violence.

United States Institute of Peace
http://www.usip.org
A U.S. government-funded institution with excellent resources for teaching peacemakers how to address conflict areas around the world.

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