Town Of Ulster

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January 21, 2005
Table Of Contents:
Modern Marvels Nature Tech: Tsunamis, Thursday, January 27th at 7 PM/6c Special Presentation: The French Revolution, Saturday, January 29th at 9AM/8C Time Machine, First Invasion: The War of 1812, Saturday, January 29th at 11 AM/10c
Modern Marvels Nature Tech: Tsunamis Thursday, January 27th at 7PM/6c

The devastation wrought by the recent tsunami has attracted the attention and humanitarian focus of the world. The shocking enormity of this disaster has prompted many of us to explore the natural dynamics underlying the momentum of these gigantic waves. Tsunamis, among the deadliest and most mysterious of all natural disasters, are large ocean waves typically generated by offshore earthquakes, volcanic eruptions, and landslides. This seismic activity creates a large-scale underwater displacement of sediment on the seabed and produces a massive underwater wave - or series of waves known as a “wave train.” Scientists are beginning to understand more and more about these killer waves as technology has enabled them to predict more with more accuracy when a tsunami might strike. Computerized buoys, wave simulation machines, satellites, shake tables and 3-D models are among the technologies scientists rely upon, but even these do not allow for definite forewarning. Traveling to locations in Hawaii, Japan, Oregon, Seattle and California, this program highlights the latest state-of-the-art technology scientists use to predict and study the tsunami. This episode in the Modern Marvels series introduces students to the natural forces behind these phenomena and traces the social costs of their proliferation. It is an excellent opportunity for students to learn more about the enormous waves which have captured the international world with their incredible force.

Curriculum Links:

Modern Marvels, Nature Tech: Tsunamis would be useful for Science and Technology, Geography, and Current Events courses.

This program fulfills the following guidelines outlined by the National Council for History Education: Human Interaction with the Environment.

Discussion Questions:
1. Why has it been so hard for scientists to predict tsunamis in the past? What are some of the new methods they have developed to predict them?
2. Why are tsunamis more likely to emerge in some geographic locations than others?

Special Presentation: The French Revolution Saturday, January 29th at 9AM/8c

A dethroned king, a flamboyant queen, the storming of a fortress prison and the terror of the guillotine—the French Revolution has all of the ingredients of an engrossing drama. Yet to delve beneath the surface of these characters and symbols is to discover the complexity of this transformative era. The events of the French Revolution, transpiring over the span of a decade, were part of a grander Age of Revolutions. At the same time they were comprised of a series of smaller stories of individual French citizens becoming politically engaged amidst tremendous poverty, intellectual transformation, and—ultimately, violence. A combination of factors including rising expectations spurred by the Enlightenment, massive starvation, and frustration with the mismanagement of an inept monarchy pushed the Revolution’s initial aims. These aims were worn down as political conflicts splintered Revolutionary groups and led to a frenzy of executions by guillotine. This special two-hour presentation, The French Revolution, peels through the layers of these remarkable years, from 1789 through the turn of a new century, to reveal an era of intense and lasting political and intellectual change. The French Revolution provides a captivating introduction to these events, leading students from the grandeur of Versailles as King Louis XVI wed the teenaged wonder Marie Antoinette through the dramatic culmination of the Revolutionary period as thousands of dead were left in its wake. This guide will supply teachers with suggestions for using this thought-provoking program to help students grasp the significance of the French Revolution and the broader political era in which these events occurred. This program is an excellent resource for understanding how political ideas develop, the causes and consequences of Revolution, and how the French Revolution altered the course of European history. With compelling commentary from historians, fascinating tidbits about the fall of the monarchy, and colorful descriptions of the Revolution’s key players, this program will engage students and prompt them to further investigate these vivid and often shocking years.

Curriculum Links: The French Revolution would be useful for World History, European History, World Civilization, and Global History courses. Due to some sensitive and mature content, we would recommend it for high school students. We would also recommend that teachers view the program in its entirety before screening it for students. This program fulfills the following guidelines outlined by the National Council for History Education: Patterns of Social and Political Interaction, Civilization, Cultural Diffusion and Innovation and Comparative History of Major Developments.

Teacher’s Guide Available: Time Machine, First Invasion: The War of 1812 Saturday, January 29th at 11 AM/10c

The American Revolution delivered to the world not only a new nation but the firm promise that the United States would provide an example of independence, freedom, equality, and sovereignty. The depth of this promise was declared boldly in the founding documents, but the proof that this nation could succeed in securing these ideals emerged more fully over time. Just thirty years after independence from Great Britain was won, the War of 1812 signaled that the tests the United States would face, both internally and externally, were severe. Tension between the United States and England persisted in the years after the revolution, even as the British were engaged in war with France. A complex set of concerns thrust the United States and Great Britain into war, including the impressments of American citizens into the British navy and the on-going efforts among the British to control commerce on the high seas. These infractions reached a breaking point, and what has been termed America’s “the second war of Independence” was authorized by Congress in June of 1812 in response to the pleas of a reluctant yet determined President James Madison. In what would become a three year odyssey fought on many fronts, these two nations challenged each other in Canada, at sea, and in the heart of the nation’s capital. First Invasion: The War of 1812 is a dramatic and engaging introduction to the many phases of this war, from its declaration through the climactic Battle of New Orleans in 1815. First Invasion is an excellent resource for classroom use, providing students with a framework for understanding the path from the American Revolution to industrialization. This compelling program invites students to consider the War of 1812 as part of an on-going process of American identity formation as the nation turned inward to define itself anew.

Curriculum Links: First Invasion: The War of 1812 would be useful for classes on American history, American culture, and social studies courses. It is appropriate for middle school and high school students. It fulfills the following standards as outlined by the National Council for History Education: Values, Beliefs, Political Ideas and Institutions, Patterns of Social and Political Interaction, and Comparative History of Major Developments.

Discussion Questions:
1. What were the 3 most important issues which led to the War of 1812?
2. How did Dolley Madison help save our nation’s history during the War of 1812?
3. Why do you think the War of 1812 should be studied? What was its legacy?
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