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Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:05 AM

"What is Vietnam?"

Last edited Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:36 AM - Edit history (1)

I am a middle school librarian.

My student demographic reflects the city I live in. Some very wealthy, mostly middle class, some in section 8 housing.

Last week, I was working with a small group of kids on technology--- four students. Again, these four were in the different demographic range as reflected by our city. We were just having fun, exploring some new chrome books, and discussing how they could use this technology in the media center for their classroom projects.

I was not paying attention to the banter, and was demonstrating a chrome app, when one of the kids said, "My Dad went to Vietnam and has issues." OK, Now I am listening. These students are not anywhere near old enough to have a parent that served in Vietnam. Maybe grandparents....if that. I might have heard him wrong- he might have said, "My GRAND Dad..."

What floored me was the response from the other three: "What IS Vietnam? I have heard of it......"

14 replies, 1345 views

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Replies to this discussion thread
Arrow 14 replies Author Time Post
Reply "What is Vietnam?" (Original post)
essme Feb 2020 OP
handmade34 Feb 2020 #1
essme Feb 2020 #2
democrank Feb 2020 #3
dware Feb 2020 #4
handmade34 Feb 2020 #8
malaise Feb 2020 #14
Cirque du So-What Feb 2020 #5
Ilsa Feb 2020 #6
CTyankee Feb 2020 #7
3Hotdogs Feb 2020 #9
not_the_one Feb 2020 #12
MiniMe Feb 2020 #10
ooky Feb 2020 #11
Blue_Adept Feb 2020 #13

Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:09 AM

1. and therein

lies many of our problems... history just isn't cool anymore

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Response to handmade34 (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:35 AM

2. I am working on that

nt

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Response to essme (Reply #2)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:41 AM

3. Good luck with that.

So important...

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Response to essme (Reply #2)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:44 AM

4. Thank you for working on that.

I served in Vietnam and it's part of our country's history that should be taught in school, not swept under the rug like it never happened.

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Response to essme (Reply #2)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:58 AM

8. Thank you!

I went back to school years ago to get my license to teach Social Studies and felt very restricted by the administration once I got into the schools... we so desperately need good teachers that can work within the system... getting to the kids and making it interesting is crucial

I sincerely appreciate those of you that can do that

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Response to handmade34 (Reply #1)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 12:12 PM

14. History departments are shutting down in universities

Apparently only courses that help you make money matter

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:50 AM

5. Until the draft lottery and elimination of college deferment

those from families with financial means could always find a way to avoid service. Iím guessing the Vietnam vetís child was from a working-class family.

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:52 AM

6. Sometimes I think the lack of interest in History is because

of the giant and rapid leaps in technology. Not only does current technology distract and entertain, but kids have a difficult time imagining life with less technology to help solve problems or communicate quickly and efficiently.

Then again, maybe it is laziness.

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 08:55 AM

7. It might as well be Troy...

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 09:03 AM

9. The kids in my classes got it all, from Bao Dai, Dien Bein Pho to

war criminal, Kissenger and the fucking shape of the table at the peace conference.

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Response to 3Hotdogs (Reply #9)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 12:10 PM

12. THANK YOU!!!!!

 

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 12:02 PM

10. I didn't really like history in high school, BUT

I took a few history classes in college and I loved them. I think it is that you go into depth into a small subject and it holds your attention. I was young during the vietnam war, one of my cousins was drafted. But the war had pretty much ended by the time I graduated high school

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 12:07 PM

11. There are plenty of grandparents that served in Vietnam.

The ones who were lucky enough to come back.

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Response to essme (Original post)

Sun Feb 9, 2020, 12:10 PM

13. Middle School is really unclear state to state

In one state, it's junior high

In another, it's 5-6, or 4-6.

Either way, looking at it from 2020 and figuring that the kids in question may be a decade or so old in question, or a touch older...

why would they know about Vietnam? It's often not taught in history until high school in most curriculums, and even during the 80s in my HS career.

It doesnt' come up often in regular culture anymore and especially not at material aimed at their age group.

It's akin to saying "They never heard of cassette decks" at this point.

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