live chat The Thoughtful Christian Logo
Resources for Christians and seekers
Paper Clips: Changing the World . . . One Classroom at a Time
Publication Date:
9/3/2008
Pages:
0
Session(s)
1
Product Type:
Internet Download
Youth Study, Youth Study
Product Number:
TC5036

How do we learn tolerance? The surprising answer offered by the documentary Paper Clips is that you begin counting. In 1998, a group of twenty five middle school students at Whitwell Middle School in Tennessee began a course of study on intolerance and the devastating effect it can have when prejudice goes unchecked. During a study of the Holocaust, the class was shocked to learn that 6 million Jewish people were killed in concentration camps. One of the students in the course suggested they try to count to six million by collecting something. The class discovered that citizens of Denmark wore paperclips during World War II in solidarity with the Jewish people. Learning that such an ordinary object could have profound meaning shocked the class and stirred them to action. They began collecting paperclips, one at a time, with the hope of reaching six million.

"It began as a lesson about prejudice--what happened next was a miracle" is the tagline for this documentary. We quickly learn and experience through the movie how prejudice plays out in every day life. Teachers judge and limit students. Southerners are seen in stereotypical ways. Christians and Jews do not understand each other. As the movie unfolds, we learn how this project offers countless lessons about overcoming prejudice on all accounts. Through relationships and collaborative learning, transformations of understanding happen in miraculous ways. The miracles are abundant in the film as well. Two German journalists appear in Tennessee and commit themselves to the project. Paperclips come pouring in--each with a letter and a story. The community of Whitwell organizes over and over again to respond to the massive involvement in the project by counting paperclips, filing letters, and creating a "Children's Holocaust Memorial Park." Teachers and students alike are transformed by learning. Dozens of Holocaust survivors come to visit the school and tell their stories. And perhaps the greatest miracle in the film is told as the survivor's stories intersect the story of this class project: the ability of the human soul to transcend evil generated by intolerance is truly a miracle.

Lisa Nichols Hickman serves as Associate Pastor at New Wilmington Presbyterian Church in New Wilmington, Pennsylvania. She was formerly a pastor at Nassau Presbyterian Church in Princeton, New Jersey and has served congregations in Arizona and North Carolina.


1
Ash Wednesday
The Importance of ...
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
2
Be One
Build Unity
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
3
Enchanted
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
4
Evan Almighty
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
5
"Everybody Hurts"
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
6
Ezekiel's Vision f...
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
7
Here I Am, Lord
Now What?
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
8
Lars and the Real ...
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $7.50
Sale Price $7.50
Add to Cart
9
"Lord, Make Me . ....
Following St. Fran...
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $12.00
Sale Price $12.00
Add to Cart
10
Mercy & Melons
Praying the Alphab...
by Abingdon Press
Lisa Nichols Hickman
List Price $15.99
Sale Price $11.99
Add to Cart
 
comments powered by Disqus
List Price: $7.50