Unraveling the Mystery of 187: Teaching Students its Significance
187, a seemingly random number, actually holds significant historical and cultural relevance. As educators, it is our responsibility to facilitate understanding and discussions around notable numbers and their significance to society. This article aims to provide guidelines and tips for teaching students about the importance of 187, and incorporating this topic into classroom lessons.
The Historical Context of 187
To effectively teach students about 187, it is crucial to first understand its historical context. The number originated from the California Penal Code, section 187, which defines murder as an unlawful killing with “malice aforethought”. This section gained notoriety during the 1980s and 1990s when gang violence surged in Los Angeles, mainly within two rival gangs – the Bloods and Crips. During this era, the term ‘187’ was widely used as street slang to symbolize a threat or warning.
Integrating the Topic in a Lesson Plan
Now that you have an understanding of its origin, there are various ways to incorporate 187 into various subjects within your curriculum:
1. Social Studies: Introduce students to the socio-historical context surrounding 187’s emergence as a symbol within gang culture in Los Angeles during the late 20th century. Engage them in discussions about gang violence at that time, unpacking reasons for its prevalence and examining possible solutions for reducing such violence.
2. Language Arts: Encourage critical thinking by having students analyze song lyrics and movies featuring the term 187 or themes associated with it. This can facilitate discussions on how language evolves over time and how specific words or numbers can gain cultural prominence through media exposure.
3. Mathematics: Although not directly related to history or language arts, take this opportunity to explore interesting mathematical properties of the number 187. Encourage problem-solving skills by assigning related puzzles or problems.
4. Law and Civics: Dive into a legal discussion by examining California Penal Code Section 187, discussing its role in defining murder as a crime, and how it has impacted the legal system and law enforcement strategies.
1. Plan age-appropriate lessons – When teaching younger students, keep explanations simple and focus on the significance of the number without delving into graphic or distressing details. For high school or college students, facilitate more in-depth discussions on the socio-cultural implications associated with 187.
2. Create an inclusive environment – Encourage open dialogue among students while ensuring that classroom discussions remain respectful and non-judgmental. It is important that all viewpoints are heard and acknowledged.
3. Incorporate multimedia resources – To maintain student engagement, use various forms of media to enhance your lesson plan. This could include video clips containing interviews with former gang members, documentaries on gang violence, or music containing references to 187.
4. Evaluate learning through creative assignments – Assess student comprehension of the topic through written reports, group presentations, or creative projects such as short film productions or poetry writing.
Teaching about the significance of 187 is an essential part of fostering historical understanding and cultural awareness among students. Integrating this topic into various subjects within your curriculum, as well as utilizing a range of teaching techniques and materials, will ultimately result in a more enriching educational experience for all parties involved.