Social Studies Assignment 1


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Social Studies Assignment 1

  1. 1. SOCIAL STUDIES ASSIGNMENT 1 By: Sally Alshawa
  3. 3. 2. INITIAL OBSERVATIONS ¡  My artifact of choice for this assignment is a decorative serving plate that was hand painted from Varadaro, Cuba. In the middle of the plate there is a fish that has a variety of patterns and colours. The bottom of the plate has “Cuba Varadaro” written, as well as a distinctive patterned border around the plate. When I initially saw this plate, It was hung on a wall in a street vendor in Varadaro. I thought It could serve two purposes in my perspective: a serving plate for snacks, or it could be hung on a wall. The details of the plate are very meticulous and interesting to observe and could be interpreted in a variety of ways.
  4. 4. 3. FORMULATING QUESTIONS ¡  Where specifically was this plate made? ¡  Who made it? ¡  What do the designs on the plate represent? Are they representative of the culture in Cuba? ¡  What material was the plate made from? ¡  Why were these certain colours chosen to create the designs?
  5. 5. QUESTIONS CON’T ¡  What kind of paint was used to create the painting? ¡  Why is there a fish as the focal point of the plate? ¡  What significance does the fish have in Cuban culture? ¡  Is decorative plates a prominent job market for Cubans? ¡  What does the sun represent in the fish painting? ¡  What other cultures have these types of decorative plates? ¡  What other purposes can the plate be used for? ¡  Why are decorative plates like this sold in Cuba?
  6. 6. FRAMING QUESTION ¡  How did the Spanish- American war impact the Cuban economy? ¡  Connections to the Social Studies Curriculum: ¡  This framing questions draws upon the cause and consequence social studies concept because it investigates the impact of global political and economic issues in a third world country. (Grade 6)
  7. 7. FOCUS QUESTIONS ¡  Are there economic ties between Canada and Cuba today? ¡  What was the Cuban economy like before and after the Spanish- American war? ¡  How is the government in Cuba different from Canada? ¡  What kinds of resources does Cuba produce? ¡  What does Cuba export/import, and how significant is that for the Cuban economy? ¡  How is the quality of life in Cuba? How does that differ from that of Canada?
  8. 8. 4. GATHERING & ORGANIZING INFORMATION, EVIDENCE AND DATA ¡  Cuba is a socialist state run by the Cuban Communist Party ¡  U.S. embargo began on October 19, 1960 ¡  The embargo has been criticized for its effects on food, clean water, medicine, and other economic needs of the Cuban population. ¡  The Spanish- American war was a conflict in 1898 between Spain and the United States which was the result of the American intervention in the Cuban War of Independence ¡  Fidel Castro was president, prime minister, and commander of the armed forces until February 2008, when he stepped down due to illness. ¡  The Cuban economy is dominated by state-run enterprises overseen by the Cuban government.
  9. 9. GATHERING INFO CON’T ¡  Currently, tourism has become one of Cuba’s main important assets to their economy. The United States embargo prevents American visitors from entering Cuba, however, a major portion of tourists that visit Cuba are Canadian citizens. ¡  Nickel producing has also become a major resource for the Cuban economy ¡  In 1994, a joint venture was formed between the Cuban Nickel Union and the Canadian firm Sherritt International, which operates a mining and processing plant on the island in Moa, Cuba. ¡  There are in total 85 Canadian companies operating in Cuba, including brewer Labatts and Pizza Nova.
  10. 10. GATHERING INFO CON’T ¡  The main source of the Cuban economy is agriculture. The country is a major producer of several crops but sugar and tobacco are essential for sustaining their economy. Despite not being able to export their products to the United States, Cuba has become a major exporter of agricultural products. ¡  A substantial amount of Cuban products are produced locally using the resources that Cuba obtains. The state heavily regulates importing and exporting of products, and therefore Cuba must rely on local resources in order to sell their goods.
  12. 12. PRIMARY RESOURCES ¡  1. The Royal Ontario Museum: The ROM’s institute for Contemporary Culture has an exhibition of the works of the leading contemporary Cuban artist Carlos Garaicoa. Using different kinds of objects and materials, Garaicoa shows us through his art how he sees the difference between what the revolution promised and what conditions are like in Cuba today. This exhibition looks at the architecture, cities, politics, history and people of Cuban society.
  13. 13. PRIMARY RESOURCES CON’T ¡  2. Examining Cuban artifacts that represent Cuba’s history and culture before and after the war. Using these artifacts as part of the learning process about cultures can be optimal because it allows students to see and observe, as well as make their own predictions and connections to Cuban history and present day economy.
  14. 14. SECONDARY RESOURCES ¡  1 . Histor y and informational videos about Cuba. Through videos, students can visually obser ve and gain information about how the economy in Cuba was built, and how the revolution has changed/impacted Cuba’s social, political, and economic standpoint. ¡  Examples of educational videos: ¡ ¡ ¡  2. Websites: students can visit educational websites to gain information about Cuba. ¡  Examples of websites: ¡ ¡
  15. 15. MY SOURCES ¡  Primar y Sources: ¡  I have had the chance to visit Varadaro, Cuba (a popular tourist destination), and Havana (the capital city of Cuba). Through seeing a tourist destination in comparison with a city that locals reside in, I obser ved first hand how the Cuban people live on a social and economical level. The buildings in Havana were mostly historical buildings still standing today. The stores were almost all selling the same or ver y similar products across the city (a result of a state-controlled economy). ¡  I have also had the opportunity to speak with and informally inter view local Cubans to ask them about their standing economic status from an insider perspective. Most individuals mentioned that Cuba relies heavily on tourism to sustain it’s economy. Furthermore, that the wages are extremely low in Cuba and that Cuban citizens all share relatively similar social economic status’s across the countr y.
  16. 16. HAVANA ¡  These are some pictures that I have taken in Havana, Cuba. This can provide a glimpse into looking at a comparison in the Canadian and Cuban economy and the implications of a state run by a communist party.
  17. 17. SECONDARY RESOURCES ¡  Websites I have gathered information from: ¡ ¡ ¡ ¡
  18. 18. 5. INTERPRETING AND ANALYZING INFORMATION, EVIDENCE AND/OR DATA ¡  A) 2 Additional Connections to Social Studies Thinking concepts: ¡  1) Interrelationships; Perspective: This connects with addressing the global issues, specifically focusing on third world countries such as Cuba and how Canada is involved internationally in their actions. The trade and tourism connections that Cuba has with Canada has a significant positive impact on the Cuban economy (The Ontario Social Studies Curriculum, Grade 6 – page 118) ¡  2) Patterns and Trends: This concept can connect with examining the data of the Cuban economy before and after the revolution, as well as the statistical significance of Canadian-Cuban trade, as well as Canadian-Cuban tourism for the Cuban economy and its implications . (The Ontario Social Studies Curriculum, Grade 6 – page 118)
  19. 19. CITIZENSHIP REPRESENTATION ¡  How the decorative plate connects with citizenship representation: ¡  Responsibility: the individual who created this hand-made decorative plate had the role and responsibility to create a product to represent Cuba in an artistic way. When I view this piece of art, I automatically associate it with Cuban culture and what it portrays. Therefore, the creator of this piece of art has a underpinning of responsibility to mirror Cuban culture in through art. The plate says “Varadero Cuba” written in bold printing on it, therefore it becomes an automatic association of Cuban culture that is made. ¡  Relationships of power: The division of labour becomes of focus. The people who created this piece of art could become linked to a closer analysis of the economical hierarchal structure in Cuba.
  20. 20. LINKS TO SOCIAL STUDIES CURRICULUM ¡  B) Social Studies topics that relate to my item: ¡  1) Grade 6 – People and Environments: Canada’s Interactions with the Global Community. Specifically: The specific expectation of B2.1: formulate questions to guide investigations into global issues of political, social, economic, and/or environmental importance (Social Studies Curriculum, Grade 6 – page 125) This topic ties into learning about the Cuban economy and global issues of war and its impact. Students can investigate about how the economy in Cuba differs from that of Canada’s economy.
  21. 21. LINKS TO SOCIAL STUDIES CURRICULUM CON’T ¡  2) Grade 6 - People and Environments: The Role of Government and Responsible Citizenship ¡  Specific expectations: B1.1 assess the effectiveness of actions taken by one or more levels of government to address an issue of national, provincial/ territorial, and/or local significance Students can examine what levels of government deal with trades of goods; imports/exports in both Canada and Cuba. Students can provide their perspective on the effectiveness of the government’s involvement in a variety of issues that connect to their local community.
  22. 22. LINKS TO OTHER SUBJECTS ¡  Art – Students can recreate artistic work from different cultures, as well as Canadian culture and compare and contrast the two. This also gives students hands-on learning and allows them to cultivate their learning of different cultures through personal artistic creations. ¡  Examining the art work of the Cuban culture and how it is represented through their art ¡  Mathematics – Gathering and analayzing statistical data about economical structures of the third world countries. ¡  English - researching about different cultures and writing a reflection on perspective and making connections – higher level thinking concepts.
  23. 23. LINKS TO CHILDREN'S LITERATURE ¡  C) Children’s Literature related to the decorative plate: ¡  1) “It’s Okay to Be Different” by Todd Parr ¡  This book sends the message of the importance of respecting others even though if they are different. This connects with my item because it taps into a different culture than Canada, and how it should be viewed objectively and we should be accepting towards others even if they come from different backgrounds.
  24. 24. LINKS TO CHILDREN'S LITERATURE CON’T ¡  2) “The Surrender Tree” by Margarita Engle ¡  This book highlights Cuba’s war of independence and the trials and tribulations of the battles. This book also provides a closer look into the social, economical and political instability of its aftermath.
  25. 25. 6. EVALUATING INFORMATION, EVIDENCE, AND/OR DATA AND DRAWING CONCLUSIONS ¡  Through examining the research about the Cuban economy after the Spanish- American war, it can be concluded that Cuba’s economy differs substantially from that of Canada’s. Their reliance for sustainability on tourism and natural resources sets Cuba apart. Their enterprises are mostly staterun and the government has a high level of control for the economy. As a result, this has affected the lives of many with poverty rates increasing, high rates of unemployment and underemployment. The effects on the war are still existent today as Cuba is considered a third world country and citizens still struggle to sustain a high standard of living.
  26. 26. RESOURCES ¡  The Ontario curriculum: social studies, grades 1 to 6, histor y and geography, grades 7 and 8.. Rev. ed. Toronto: Ontario, Ministry of Education, 2004. Print. ¡ ¡ ¡–American_War ¡ ¡ ¡ ¡ ¡ ¡–Cuba_relations