Mrs. Pierce Recommends: Learning about Cannibalism at Jamestown and the Lost Roanoke Colony!

In an effort to provide you guys with additional historical context outside of class that DOESN’T require even more reading, I thought you would enjoy listening to these short episodes from the podcast ‘Stuff You Missed In History Class’. Remember, the best way to achieve a higher score on the AP Exam, to become a better writer and a more skilled analyzer of literature is to BUILD MORE KNOWLEDGE. The ‘Mrs. Pierce Recommends’ posts throughout the semester will point you in the direction of interactive, entertaining ways of learning more about American History and Literature, note and study techniques, and ways to de-stress and be happy! While you will not be directly quizzed on these podcasts, they will add a certain amount of depth to the analysis you are able to conduct on the assigned readings, and therefore could involuntarily improve your writing and grade! Enjoy!

 

Click here to listen to the podcast of “What Happened to the Lost Colony of Roanoke?”

  • In 1587, English colonists in Roanoke mysteriously disappeared, leaving only a few cryptic clues behind. For centuries since, researchers have wondered what became of the lost colonists.

 

Click here to listen to the podcast of “Cannibalism at Jamestown”

  • As winter fell at the end of 1609, the settlers in Jamestown, Virginia, found themselves in dire straits. A powerful hurricane had all but destroyed a fleet of ships carrying provisions from England, leaving the colonial fort with a depleted food supply. Outside the walls, the Powhatan Indians had declared war and were laying siege to the fort, trapping the 300 settlers inside. Out of food and unable to forage, the desperate settlers ate horses, dogs, rats, and snakes. As winter dragged on, they turned to an even more unorthodox source of food: Today, scientists revealed the first physical evidence that the starving colonists at Jamestown ate their dead.
Mrs Pierce Recommends

Spotlight on Historical Context – Footbinding

After you read the poetry of Chinese activities Ch’ui Chin last week, many of you in class decided that you wanted to write your extended response over how Chin used imagery in her poems to protest the Chinese practice of footbinding. I thought I would post a little information for those of you that were interested in learning a little more about this ancient and taboo Chinese custom.

596441-001Foot binding (also known as “lotus feet”) was the custom of applying painfully tight binding to the feet of young girls to prevent further growth. The practice possibly originated among upper-class court dancers during the Five Dynasties and Ten Kingdoms period in Imperial China (10th or 11th century), then became popular during the Song dynasty and eventually spread to all social classes. Foot binding became popular as a means of displaying status (women from wealthy families, who did not need their feet to work, could afford to have them bound) and was correspondingly adopted as a symbol of beauty in Chinese culture. Its prevalence and practice however varied in different parts of the country.

The Manchu Kangxi Emperor tried to ban foot binding in 1664 but failed. In the later part of the 19th century, Chinese reformers challenged the practice but it was not until the early 20th century that foot binding began to die out as a result of anti-foot binding campaigns. Foot-binding resulted in lifelong disabilities for most of its subjects, and a few elderly Chinese women still survive today with disabilities related to their bound feet.

Click here to listen to a very interesting podcast that details the history of foot binding, as well as the procedure and when it was outlawed. 

According to some news organization, foot binding has recently made a come-back in China, with modern girls choosing to have their foot broken and bound in the traditional ‘lotus foot’.

Click here to read a 2014 article about modern foot binding resurgence.

Remember, this isn’t information for a test or quiz – I just appreciated how interested so many of you were in learning more about this historical custom, and wanted to point you in the direction of more information! 🙂

10th Grade Literature Fall 2015 Fall 2015

A Cornucopia of Historical Spotlights – Contextualizing Literature of The American Revolution

As we (quickly!) make our way through the literature of the American Revolution, I wanted to be sure to provide you with as much fun historical context as possible. While I know that you all have been learning about American history, and literary history, since elementary school I thought it would be interesting to dispel some of the myths you’ve been told, and to shine a little light on topics frequently looked over. Please browse the selection of podcasts below over the course of the week – these will add a lot of historical context to your text analysis and essays, will increase your general knowledge  (which will come in handy for the AP exam!) and will also help you in the next unit over Expansionist literature. I will also be adding a bonus section to your exam, just over these podcasts! Enjoy!

 

The Boston Massacre

  • A look at the distinctive un-massacre-y-ness of the Boston massacre. If asked the questions, “How many people do you think died in the Boston Massacre?” many people will guess a number of twenty or more. The reality was much smaller, and the massacre moniker exists today because of some very determined colonial spin doctoring.

13 Causes for the American Revolution

  • “No taxation without representation” is often thought of as the main beef that led to the American Revolution, but it was only one of many moving parts in the bigger picture.

James Armistead – Revolutionary Spy

  • James Armistead was a slave in Virginia, but got his master’s approval to enlist when the Revolutionary War came. Armistead worked as a spy, and his story is one of many free and enslaved African-Americans who fought in the Revolutionary War.

Did Betsy Ross Really Make the First American Flag?

  • Did Betsy Ross really make the first American flag, or is this just another revolutionary legend? Learn the myths and facts about Betsy Ross and the first American flag in this podcast

Hessians

  • Often described as mercenaries who fought for Britain during the American Revolution, the Hessians were really auxiliary troops who fought for lots of governments in lots of military actions (and they weren’t all from Hesse-Kassel). Today’s episode takes us through how German principalities got into the business of armies for hire in the first place, why Britain needed these troops during the American Revolution, and the most famous altercation between the colonists and the Hessians during the Revolutionary War.

How Thomas Jefferson Worked

  • Thomas Jefferson’s life was peppered with accomplishments — but what about the disparity between his public image and private life?

How Thomas Jefferson’s Bible Worked

  • Thomas Jefferson, one of America’s founding fathers, was a very unorthodox thinker. His revision of the Bible was one of his most controversial projects – listen to the podcast to find out why!
11th Grade American Literature Fall 2015

Historical Context Spotlight- Cannibalism at Jamestown and the Lost Roanoke Colony

In an effort to provide you guys with additional historical context outside of class that DOESN’T require even more reading, I thought you would enjoy listening to these short episodes from the podcast ‘Stuff You Missed In History Class’. Remember, the best way to achieve a higher score on the AP Exam, to become a better writer and a more skilled analyzer of literature is to BUILD MORE KNOWLEDGE. The ‘Historical Context Spotlight’ posts throughout the semester will point you in the direction of interactive, entertaining ways of learning more about American History and Literature. While you will not be directly quizzed on these podcasts, they will add a certain amount of depth to the analysis you are able to conduct on the assigned readings, and therefore could involuntarily improve your writing and grade! Enjoy!

 

What Happened to the Lost Colony of Roanoke?

  • In 1587, English colonists in Roanoke mysteriously disappeared, leaving only a few cryptic clues behind. For centuries since, researchers have wondered what became of the lost colonists.

 

Cannibalism at Jamestown

  • As winter fell at the end of 1609, the settlers in Jamestown, Virginia, found themselves in dire straits. A powerful hurricane had all but destroyed a fleet of ships carrying provisions from England, leaving the colonial fort with a depleted food supply. Outside the walls, the Powhatan Indians had declared war and were laying siege to the fort, trapping the 300 settlers inside. Out of food and unable to forage, the desperate settlers ate horses, dogs, rats, and snakes. As winter dragged on, they turned to an even more unorthodox source of food: Today, scientists revealed the first physical evidence that the starving colonists at Jamestown ate their dead.
11th Grade American Literature Fall 2015