Learning to Speak Across Political Divides: Using PURPLE in the Classroom

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Join Melissa Weintraub of Resetting the Table and Share My Lesson for a review of the film "PURPLE" and and an accompanying Discussion Guide as free resources in the lead-up to the election.

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Designed to build greater empathy and recognition in the face of deepening U.S. divides, the short film PURPLE models a rare conversation that uplifts and inspires even while going toward the heat of passionate political differences. Filmed in rural Wisconsin and Iowa—in a swing region within two bordering swing states—PURPLE models what healthy public debate on fault-line issues can look like.  The film will engage students and help them understand divergent opinions on current political and social issues on their own terms, while discussing the value of doing so for our democracy.

PURPLE represents a collaboration between Resetting the Table, a leading political mediation organization, and Transient Pictures, an Emmy award-winning production firm behind P.O.V.’s Good Fortune and For Ahkeem.

Resetting the Table is distributing the film and an accompanying discussion guide as free resources in the lead-up to the election. The film is a great fit for civics, government, history, debate, social studies and humanities courses, and helps teach civic skills and dispositions. The film and lesson plan are best suited for students in grades 6-12 and up.

Melissa Weintraub, the founding co-executive director of Resetting the Table and one of the creators of PURPLE, will be the presenter. Following a screening of the 20-minute film, she will walk through a suggested post-screening process that teaches two key skills that students need to engage in productive conversations across divides and to participate effectively in our democracy.

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Available for one-hour of PD credit. A certificate of completion will be available for download at the end of your session that you can submit for your school's or district's approval.

On Demand version is available in closed captioning in English and Spanish.

Original Air Date: Thursday, October 1, 2020

Creative Commons License: 
Attribution Non-commercial NoDerivative CC (BY-NC-ND)
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October 2020