A Documentary a Day

“Is this a real movie or a documentary?”

Welcome to my second least favorite question students ask me, right after “Did we do anything important yesterday?”

Documentary films are awesome, whether used in a social studies classroom or for the expansion of one’s own learning. Since I wasn’t finding the time to read, I recently began making a conscious attempt to watch more documentaries.

The plan is to post short, two-paragraph reviews of videos I watch, explaining and reviewing each film under the “A Documentary a Day” tag. My hope is that this will force me to think about the films I watch and give you some insight as to whether a particular film is worth watching or using in a classroom.

My scoring system is explained below. More posts will follow as I finish several films on any given topic, so come back whenever you feel like checking out what’s new. Might as well read the rest of the site too?

Happy learning.

1 Star – Poor. Would not recommend.
2 Stars – Okay. You could do better.
3 Stars – Solid. Does its job. Nothing more. Nothing less.
4 Stars – Great. Goes above and beyond.
5 Stars – Excellent. Mandatory viewing to speak on the subject.

New History

(Editor’s Note: This is a slightly updated version of something posted as a Facebook note several years ago. Also, I got the house!)

Many of you know that I am buying a house. Last Tuesday, I paid a home inspector to check out my (hopefully) future abode. After he looked it over, he asked me what I did for a living. I told him I was a history teacher. Without missing a beat, he asked, “You’re not teaching that ‘new history,’ are you?” I charmingly told him that I teach the truth and nothing but the truth. I didn’t think about it again until today. Continue reading