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Odblog

A weblog designed to share Geography resources with students and colleagues

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Going to Samba school...

Categories: s1 and s2
I am writing about an idea for a lesson given to me by Miss MacKay, who is with us for 6 weeks at the moment. I am sharing it because I thought the concept for the lesson was outstanding. I would never have thought to teach about people in Brazil in this way, and will certainly have to come out of my comfort zone to do so. This is a follow up to a mapping from memory exercise which introduces some of the different ethnic populations of Brazil. The lesson would start with an introduction to Carnaval through a video like the one below




1) Tell students about the origins of Carnaval- A Christian celebration brought by the Portuguese to signify the start of lent. Talk about the influence of African culture on the celebrations
2) Ask students to comment on the stadium, the costumes, the themes in the video
3) Talk about the role of the samba schools- 12 official schools with 2-3000 participants. Where are the samba schools located? How do they choose their 'enredo' (theme) for Carnaval? Apparently, these are often quite serious themes from history, as well as being celebrations of something or based around a particular concern.
4) Introduce the meaning of Samba, a variant of an African term 'Semba', which means to pray. The drums and dance are also part of ritual worship, but were hidden through celebratory song and dance in the Portuguese led Catholic culture of Brazil. Once free, the 'slaves' moved to places such as Rio and the favelas
5) Organise pupils into 'samba schools'
6) The educational task is to commemorate the slave trade through samba songs
7) Teacher led discussion about the slave trade- Who, what, where, when, why? All of the responses on the board for use when students are writing their songs
8) Pupils to collaborate on song while 'Best of 2009 Samba' songs are playing. Remind students that although the tempo is upbeat, the lyrics are serious
9) Pupil performance as a plenary
Looking very much forward to trying an excellent and innovative idea- Thanks very much, Miss MacKay!

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