Tuesday, November 30, 2021

Schools : Let's read Mark Twain " The Adventures of Tom Sawyer " ! Resources


Mark Twain [1835-1910]


Samuel Langhorne Clemens  born on 30 November 1835,  known by his pen name Mark Twain, was an American writer, humorist, entrepreneur, publisher, and lecturer. 

He was lauded as the "greatest humorist the United States has produced, and William Faulkner called him "the father of American literature". 

Tom Sawyer

Mark Twain, 1936, 1st edition

Illustration: Norman Rockwell, 1936

Abbeville Press

His novels include The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1884), the latter of which has often been called the "Great American Novel".

Twain transcended the apparent limitations of his origins to become a popular public figure and one of America’s best and most beloved writers. 

He died on April 21, 1910.

Google Doodle Mark Twain's 176th Birthday. 2011

  • Google Doodle:

"Against the assault of laughter nothing can stand." 

Mark Twain

Since Google never likes to take itself too seriously, I wanted to pick a scene from Twain's work that is both recognizable and funny. The fence-painting sequence from The Adventures of Tom Sawyer seemed a perfect fit. Not only does it incorporate a little bit of mischievous humor (painting fences is certainly thrilling!) it also plays cleverly with the white space of the homepage. Alluding to a comic-book format, I drew Tom and Ben working on the fence and, therefore, spreading our famous white space across the doodle."

Jennifer Hom, doodler

Mark Twain

photo portrait, 1871


American gifted raconteur, who acquired international fame for his travel narratives, especially The Innocents Abroad, a humorous travel narrative, published in 1869 and based on Twain’s letters to newspapers about his 1867 steamship voyage to Europe, Egypt, and the Holy Land.

The Innocents Abroad, or the New Pilgrims' Progress

Mark Twain, 1869

via Whitmore Rare Books


Roughing It semiautobiographical novel, published in 1872. This humorous travel book, based on Twain’s stagecoach journey through the American West and his adventures in the Pacific islands, is full of colourful caricatures of outlandish locals and detailed sketches of frontier life.

Roughing it

Mark Twain, 1872

And Life on the Mississippimemoir of the steamboat era on the Mississippi River before the American Civil War, published in 1883.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 
Mark Twain, 1936
illustrations Norman Rockwell

But his adventure stories of boyhood, especially The Adventures of Tom Sawyer (1876) and Adventures of Huckleberry Finn (1885) are well known in schools. Teachers and students can find it at the school library.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 
Mark Twain
illustrations Norman Rockwell, 1936
via Mark Twain House blog

“Most of the adventures recorded in this book really occurred; one or two were experiences of my own‚ the rest those of boys who were schoolmates of mine. Huck Finn is drawn from life; Tom Sawyer also‚ but not from an individual – he is a combination of the characteristics of three boys whom I knew‚ and therefore belongs to the composite order of architecture… Part of my plan has been to try to pleasantly remind adults of what they once were themselves‚ and of how they felt and thought and talked‚ and what queer enterprises they sometimes engaged in.”


The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 
Mark Twain, 1876
illustrations Norman Rockwell
via AbeBooks

With books like The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, Adventures of Huckleberry Finn and Life on the Mississippi, Twain explored many of the seemingly carefree idylls of the typical American boy’s life.

There are different editions illustrated by different artists. However, my choice goes to Norman Rockwell. One of my favorite artists and illustrators.

Norman Rockwell was born in 1894 (during Twain’s lifetime) and grew up in New York City (where Twain spent many of his later years), the two men never met.  

Rockwell’s first works as a professional illustrator were not published until 1912, two years after Twain’s death.  As such, they were of two different eras.  So why are Rockwell and Twain twinned in many ways in the public consciousness?

"These were classics. I read through the books, making notes of which scenes would make good pictures. Of course certain scenes—for instance, Tom whitewashing his Aunt Polly’s fence—were required."

Norman Rockwell

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 
Mark Twain
illustrations: Norman Rockwell, 1936
via Mark Twain House blog

  • Education:

I believe that students should read the old classic novel Adventures of Tom Sawyer. This book is cleverly written, if not a bit antiquated. Honestly this timeless classic is more readable for high school students looking for an adventure. And they love adventure.

His characters are as sincere as they are funny and playful. His work is iconic and a part of literary history. 

Some schools banned the book for the free use of the local vernacular in Twain writing. But this shows the ease with which the word was in the common vocabulary of the time (literary Realism) and its use makes no difference in the way people acted in this story.

"Not only is reading this book an educational experience for growth and human contact as a young person, but it also helps with language development and understanding of complex ideas." 

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 
Mark Twain
illustrations: Norman Rockwell, 1936
via Mark Twain House blog

The book is considered by many to be an American masterwork. Its reading in school should, in fact, find ways to read it. Literature often deals with social criticism. Let your students express their criticism. They will have the skills of crtical thinking.

Since this book is a classic it is widely accepted as a well written and wonderfully developed story line which can only add to the knowledge base of any high school student. 

If an assigned reading, it would be interesting to note whether the Tom Sawyer Huck Finn sequels get taken out of the school library more often.

"Teach it, and use the change in attitudes over time as another component of the education. If children don’t learn where we came from, they have no sense of where we’re going."

Randy Welter

With so many books we are required to read, this should by far be the one of the most assigned.

The Adventures of Tom Sawyer 
Mark Twain
illustrations: Norman Rockwell,1936
via Mark Twain House blog

  • Resources: 

- Mark Twain House &Museum & Educational Resources



- Online exhibition

Mark Twain: A Skeptic's Progress


- e-Book online: 

e-book The Innocents Abroad, or the New Pilgrims' Progress

Project Guttenberg : https://www.gutenberg.org/files/3176/3176-h/3176-h.htm

"A person who won't read has no advantage over one who can't read."

Mark Twain



Copyright © 2021G-Souto'sBlog, gsouto-digitalteacher.blogspot.com®

Schools : Let's read Mark Twain " The Adventures of Tom Sawyer " ! Resources by G-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. 

Sunday, November 21, 2021

Schools : World Children's Day : A Better Future for Every Child ! Resources

World Children's Day
credits: UN

World Children’s Day was first established in 1954 as Universal Children's Day and is celebrated on 20 November each year to promote international togetherness, awareness among children worldwide, and improving children's welfare.

Since 1990, World Children's Day also marks the anniversary of the date that the UN General Assembly adopted both the Declaration and the Convention on children's rights.

credits: UNICEF

Mothers and fathers, teachers, nurses and doctors, government leaders and civil society activists, religious and community elders, corporate moguls and media professionals, as well as young people and children themselves, can play an important part in making World Children's Day relevant for their societies, communities and nations.

World Children's Day offers each of us an inspirational entry-point to advocate, promote and celebrate children's rights, translating into dialogues and actions that will build a better world for children.

Join the Youth Advocating for Child Rights

Since COVID-19, the world has seen record breaking numbers of children out of school - more than 1.3 billion students under 18 were kept from going to school due to global lockdowns.

But education is not just about learning, it's about giving hope, lifting children out of poverty and providing them a chance for life in dignity and a better future. No matter what gender, religion or background, all children deserve the right to go to school and it is our shared responsibility to make it

This World Children’s Day, it’s more important than ever that the leaders listen to their ideas and demands.

Every child deserves to be safe, healthy and supported, with a chance to learn and choose the future they deserve.

Ruairí Holohan is a 16-years youth activist from Ireland

  • Kids are reimagining a better world. What will you do?

"We invite you to meet this group of UNICEF Youth Advocates and other young champions who are leading with new and creative solutions to the world’s big problems and Join our TikTok challenge!"

You can play your part too!

  • Join Unicef TikTok Challenge.

Join UNICEF #OlderSelfTalk TikTok activation! How?

  • Create a video that focuses on the positive impact of youth advocacy and share it on your own TikTok account or Instagram Reels using the hashtags #OlderSelfTalk and #WorldChildrensDay, and don't forget to tag @UNICEF in your caption. 
  • You can see an example of the ‘Talking to my 50-year-old self’ format below, and create your own version to celebrate young people taking action and to encourage inter-generational discussions around global challenges like climate change, the access to quality education, vaccine equity or mental health.


  • What's happening 


  • For young children

Read the child-friendly version of the Convention on the Rights of the Child.

Explore resources for parents and teacher on child rights.  

  • For teens



What would you ask your older self? This #WorldChildrensDay join young people on #OlderSelfTalk for the chance to be featured by UNICEF

Gitanjali Rao is a 16-year-old scientist promoter of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics from the United States.

Every child and teen have the right to a safe, healthy, peaceful childhood and adolescence to develop to their full potential.

On the 20 November World Children's Day and every day, join UNICEF in speaking up for children's rights!

On World Children Day and every day, we're joining UNICEF in celebrating the universal rights of every child to reach their dreams, raise their voice and showcase their talent to the world.


Copyright © 2021G-Souto'sBlog, gsouto-digitalteacher.blogspot.com®

Schools : World Children's Day : A Better future for Every Child  bG-Souto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License. 

Thursday, November 4, 2021

International Day Against Violence & Bullying at School including Cyberbullying : Resources

credits: UNESCO

School violence and bullying including cyberbullying is widespread and affects a significant number of children and adolescents.

Bullying, including cyberbullying, can have serious impacts on children’s mental health & well-being.

5 November 2020 marked the first-ever celebration of the new International Day against Violence and Bullying at School including Cyberbullying, under the theme “Together against Bullying in school”.

credits: UNESCO

UNESCO Member States declared the first Thursday Novemberthe International Day against Violence and Bullying at School Including Cyberbullying, recognizing that school-related violence in all its forms is an infringement of children and adolescents’ rights to education and to health and well-being. 

This year we will mark the International Day on Thursday 4 November 2021.

credits: UNESCO

"Although this violence is not limited to school premises, the education system has an important role to play in teaching students how to navigate safely in the digital sphere. 

Formal education should provide children and young people with certain knowledge and skills: how to behave with civility online, to develop coping mechanisms, to identify and report  online  violence  and,  most  importantly,  to  protect  themselves  and  others  from  different forms of cyberbullying, whether perpetrated by peers or adults."

Audrey Azoulay, UNESCO Director General

Bullying at school is a serious issue, affecting one in three students worldwide. This animation follows the stories of three young victims of bullying across the world, revealing the negative consequences of bullying on educational outcomes, health and well-being.

Theme 2021.

This year, the International Day on Thursday 4 November 2021 will be under the theme:

Tackling cyberbullying and other forms of online violence involving children and young people”. 

As countries are responding to COVID-19 at varying stages, the lives and education of children and young people across the world have increasingly moved online. For example, compared to the prior year, children’s screen time had doubled in the USA by May 2020, and while online access presents opportunities for connection and learning, it is also increasingly putting children and young people at the risk of online violence.

Did cyberbullying increase during COVID-19? Sadly...Yes. Almost 50% of surveyed children in 11 European countries who were cyberbullied before lockdown said it had only increased during 2020. Here's what you need know:

Although global data is limited, evidence shows that cyberbullying has been on the rise in various regions during the pandemic. In Europe, 44% of children(link is external) who were cyberbullied prior to COVID-19 reported that it had increased during lockdown. Data from several countries also reveals that children, in particular girls at the age of 11 to 13 years, are increasingly at risk of being targeted by criminal sex predators. In the USA, 98% of online predators have never met their targets in real life.

"The lockdown affecting most European countries in spring 2020 saw the sudden shift of most children's activities into the digital world. Since then, children's schooling, leisure time, social contacts, home life have mostly been conducted at home via digital media. Embracing new tools and services and spending several hours per day online changed dramatically daily schedules. The online world offers opportunities and new possibilities, substituting face-to-face interactions. However, it opens the door to well-known online risks (inappropriate content, overuse, cyberbullying, cyberhate, disinformation, misuse of personal data, cyber-risks, etc.)"

in "How children (10-18) experienced online risks during the Covid-19 lockdown - Spring 2020", JRC Publications Repository

Behinf the numbers. Ending school violence and bullying
Education 2030
crédits: UN/ UNESCO

Disorders & consequences.

The consequences of violence and bullying at school including cyberbullying are far-reaching. This includes children and youth finding it difficult to concentrate in class, missing classes, avoiding school activities, playing truant or dropping out of school altogether. This has an adverse impact on academic achievement and future education and employment prospects. An atmosphere of anxiety, fear and insecurity is incompatible with learning and unsafe learning environments can undermine the quality of education for all learners.

"Too many people think bullying at school including cyberbullying is an inevitable rite of passage to adulthood and that is relatively harmless and one can do little to stop it. Instead, there is strong evidence that violence and bullying at school including cyberbullying can be prevented, and effectively addressed if it happens."


What's the main reason for cyberbullying? According to a survey conducted in 13 states in USA, 61% of children said they were cyberbullied because of their appearance. We must stand up for each other & #StopBullying.

Is the Internet a safe place for children? Hit like for 'yes', angry for 'no', love for 'not sure'. Interventions on how to navigate safely online can start with very young children since they are online from an early age. 

Bullying prevention, however, should be tailored to specific age groups because of the differences in bullying and cyberbullying behaviors.

All states have laws requiring schools to respond to bullying. as cyberbullying has become more prevalent with the use of technology, many states now include cyberbullying, or mention cyberbullying offenses, under these laws. schools may take action either as required by law, or with local or school policies that allow them to discipline or take other action. some states also have provisions to address bullying if it affects school performance.

"This Day calls on global awareness of the problem of online violence and cyberbullying, its consequences and the need to put an end to it. It calls on the attention of students, parents, members of the educational community, education authorities and a range of sectors and partners, including the tech industry, to encourage everyone to take a part in preventing online violence for the safety and wellbeing of children and youth."

Some thoughts.

  • Parents:

Have you ever said to your children or to a younger sibling "Don't talk to strangers"? 

Countless children are not aware of the risks they are taking when exchanging with someone online. A frightening figure even shows that 60% of children and young people in the US have actually considered meeting up with someone they have spoken to online.

  • Teachers:

Since the first lessons including technology and later social media, I thought my students to stay safe online.

Teachers and parents know how important is e-safety for kids and teens.

We have an entire 'wired' generation. Children and young people are all day connected on their cellphones or tablets. At school, at home, in a bus or just walking, even between friends. 

credits: unknown

During Covid-19 the lives and education of children and young people across the world have increasingly moved online. Spring 2020 saw the sudden shift of most children's schools activities into the digital world.

Children's schooling, leisure time, social contacts, home life have mostly been conducted at home via digital media. Embracing new tools and services and spending several hours per day online changed dramatically daily schedules.


  • My thoughts:

Since the first lessons including technology and later social media, I thought my students kids and teens to stay alert about their privacy online.

Through teaching students and training educators, I’ve learned a lot about how to effectively create and implement digital instruction and self-paced learning.

The first step you should teach is to customize the privacy settings of your students to control who sees what information about them. They must learn to configure their settings so that they have approval over who is viewing their posts or chatting and limit what comes up in search results, so only specific groups can see their photos, posts, likes or conversations.

credits: REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes

We will teach our students about online dangers if they are not prepared So we will help them to develop the skills to keep safe when they are online.

Don't forget to talk about the new dangerous games on social media as TikTok or Instagram. Parents must be aware as 'parents' at home.

We also need to understand that the internet is not simply a place.  Somewhere your kids go to hang out. And if they were doing that physically, you would want to know where they were going and who they were going with.  Even they love to be alone in their own room listening some music or chatting or texting with friends. Be active near your kids and teens. 
Parents need to start asking the same kind of questions, when their teenagers are online, ignoring the one word 'nowhere' or 'no-one answers'.
Because just as when they head out the door, every time they go onto an online space, there are potential risks.  And while you can't be there with them, you should at least attempt to satisfy yourself you know what they are doing in their own room. 
Don't forget! Parents have new tools to follow their kids online. Use them!

Safe signs

Some important messages for kids, parents and teachers:

Parents, wake up! If your teenager spends hours glued to his phone or buried in his room on a laptop, this movie shows you just how at risk he or she really is.

Kids and young adolescents do need to be reminded that not everyone they meet in school or online is who they say they are. As parents, you might wonder whether what they are doing is safe or not.

Parents need to understand that it's important to stay in close touch with their kids' online use. Dialogue is very important, but it is not enough. 


Copyright © 2021G-Souto'sBlog, gsouto-digitalteacher.blog

International Day Against Violence & Bullying at School including Cyberbullying : Resources by GinaSouto is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.


UNESCO / my personal posts about e-safety kids, bullying and cyberbullying ( English and French language)