Reacting to the Past: Henry VIII Game Part 1 of 2





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Uploaded on Jul 8, 2008

Reacting to the Past is an innovative new teaching style developed at Barnard College by Professor Mark Carnes in the mid 1990's. It consists of elaborate 4 - 6 week long "games", set in the past, in which students are assigned roles informed by classic texts in the history of ideas. Class sessions are run entirely by students; instructors advise and guide students and grade their oral and written work. It seeks to draw students into the past, promote engagement with big ideas, and improve intellectual and academic skills.

This film shows footage from the Henry VIII and the Reformation Parliament Game being played at Smith College. Students are given historic roles and asked to contend with the legislation and ideas of the English Reformation. Students debate the writings of Machiavelli, Luther, More, Erasmus and all of the issues and legislation that allowed and led to England to spliting with the Catholic Church.

The pedagogy is currently used at over 40 Colleges and Universities including Barnard and Smith College, the University of Georgia and the University of Texas at Austin. It was honored with the 2004 Theodore Hesburgh Award for pedagogical innovation and has received developmental support from the Christian A. Johnson Endeavor Foundation, Teagle Foundation, and FIPSE, U.S. Department of Education. It has also been featured in Change magazine, the Chronicle Review, the New York Times, the Chronicle of Higher Education; the Christian Science Monitor.

Go to Barnard.edu/Reacting for more information.

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