Lessons based on Marina Goldovskaya's film Children of Ivan Kuzmich

These lessons are based on excerpts from Marina Goldovskaya's documentary film, The Children of Ivan Kuzmich.  The film tells the story of a remarkable school principal, Ivan Kuzmich Novikov, who protected the children of his school from the political repressions that swept the Soviet Union during the 1930s.  The film also tells the story of the remarkable children who attended the school, including Svetlana Bukharina.

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Lesson Title Authors Short Description
Lesson 1: The Country and Stalinism Victoria Thorstensson, with Shannon Spasova, Benjamin Rifkin, Dianna Murphy

This lesson features an excerpt from the film that describes how Soviet society of the 1920s was transformed into a totalitarian state in the 1930s, about Lenin's political testament, about the enthusiasm and achievements of the Soviet people of this time, and about communal apartments.  In addition to learning cultural and historical background, students using this lesson learn to understand rhetorical questions in Russian. 

Recommended page for print-out and discussion:  12/16.

Lesson 2: School 110

Victoria Thorstensson, with Shannon Spasova, Benjamin Rifkin, Dianna Murphy

This lesson features an excerpt of the film describing the history of School No. 110 before and after the revolution, about its principal during the period of interest, and about some of the school's students and parents.  The lesson focuses on description. 

Recommended page for print-out and discussion:  12/15 or 14/15.

Lesson 3: Parents and Children Victoria Thorstensson, with Shannon Spasova, Benjamin Rifkin, Dianna Murphy

This lesson features an excerpt from the film in which students learn about school life in Russia in the 1930s and about how School No. 110 was different from other schools.  Students also learn about some of the famous people whose children attended School No. 110. 

Recommended page for print-out and discussion:  15/19.

Lesson 4: Adult Life Victoria Thorstensson, with Shannon Spasova, Benjamin Rifkin, Dianna Murphy

This lesson features an excerpt from the film in which students learn about how the Great Patriotic War changed the lives of all Soviet people and, especially, the lives of the students and teachers of School No. 110.  Students learn about the different directions taken by the students of School No. 110 after the war.  In so doing, they learn new vocabulary and practice using parenthetical phrases. 

Recommended page for print-out and discussion:  15/17.

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