Wednesday, January 20, 2010

I'm not a sadist. Really!

Who would've thought that a couple of videos on World War 1 would actually make my students cry. Never did I realise that I had some pure, innocent souls that would actually be touched by the sheer intensity of WW1 footage. Why would I when I myself is a far cry from being innocent. My heart is now an unfeeling stone that nothing beyond outright torture and mutilation would elicit any sort of response from me.

Do I feel bad for making them cry? Of course!

But did I get satisfaction from seeing them cry? Hmm... erm, yeah.

Now before you all start hurling stones at me please allow me to explain myself. Contrary to what I just said I do not derive satisfaction from another person's misery. This satisfaction is simply because I knew that somehow my efforts have paid off. Through their tears I now know that my students have finally understood the full impact WW1 had on people. And they cry because they now know why the war poets wrote dark, depressing war poems.

VIDEO 1: The Horrors of War.

I showed them this video simply because it had footage on how the battles were fought in WW1. Imagine, at the tender age of 18 you are required to go to war not knowing what to expect. World War 1 was the first war with modern weapons. Technological advancement in warfare resulted in approximately 16 million lives lost.

Video 2: Shell Shock

This is probably the more gruesome out of the two videos and is probably the reason tears started falling. This video simply shows the physical and psychological trauma that surviving soldiers had to go through because of the war. WARNING!! It is not for the faint-hearted. So approach the play button with caution.

However despite the depressing outcome of the class, I really relished class that day. The students now can probably relate better to the theme of war atrocities. And hopefully as a result of that they'll now have a much critical view on war. Peace has now become a commodity. Owned only by those with more money and bigger guns.

As for myself, what I got out if it is the fact that I have managed to draw-out a different kind of response other than the customary 'blur' look that most of my students usually have on. That in itself is a major accomplishment :P


Baronhawk said...

Tsk Tsk,

That is not the way to treat the young.

But perhaps it is needed to bring them up to speed to reality.

Especially in our golden age of the topsy-turvy.

All the best, Madam educator. While I to the journalistic trenches go.

Separate battles we may fight, but to a better end hopefully shall our endeavours unite.



Sydrah M. said...

Shan,if you're a sadist,then what am I?I'd chuckled if I were you....hehehe and you should show them the footage of Inglorious Basterds =p

Narcoleptic Insomniac said...

Hazlan: Hehe No worries. I assert again that I am no sadist. Plus the videos were a great supplement to the talk that you gave them the other day. If not diorang tak fully understand the full gravity of the war :)

Syd: Hahaha... I'll probably do that for WW2. I'll be teaching that in a couple of weeks :P


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