I Search - Exploring Culture and Gender through Films Made in or about China, by Samuel A. Reed


This unit draws from both social studies content and literature to allow students to conduct research to better understand culture. It is intended for middle grade students (grades 6th-8th) and revolves around an essential question, "Who Am I?" In this unit students explore Chinese culture through films, non fiction and fiction literature. The intention is that by exploring Chinese culture through research and films students may come to better understand their selves. The first part of the unit involves researching and analyzing Chinese history and culture in general and selected Chinese films in particular. Next the unit will analyze and compare cultures and gender issues facing young people in China with those of typical American students. Then students will design multi-media presentations on their findings about Chinese Culture, while concurrently producing an I-search, first person point of view narrative report. The unit will culminate with digital and media presentations exploring the theme Who Am I and How am I More Alike than Different from people from China?

(Developed for Social Studies, grade 6; recommended for Social Studies and Language Arts, grades 6-8)

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