Teacher's Guide for FOOTSTEPS Toussaint Louverture and HaitiSeptember 2000
Teacher Guide prepared by: our staff.
Setting the Scene:
Have students turn to page 2. Divide the class into three
groups. Assign one group page 2; another the top map and box on page 3; and the third the map of Haiti. Have the first group introduce the rest of the class to the information on its page. Have the second group do the same. Ask the third group to be ready to point out to the class each geographical site as it is mentioned when studying this issue.
Essay and Discussion:
- What happened to the Arawak Taino Indians who inhabited Haiti in the 1400s?
- What brought the Spanish explorers to Haiti?
- What was the Code Noir? Who established it, and when?
- How did the French come to be involved in Haiti?
- What was Toussaint's name? Why did he call himself Louverture?
- What were some of the difficulties Toussaint encountered as he tried to organize and establish Haiti as a republic?
- Who was Henry Christophe and what role did he play in Haiti?
- Why was Toussaint called the 'Black Spartacus'?
- What type of man do you think Toussaint was? Use incidents found in the issue as support for your description of Toussaint.
- Why and how did the French Revolution affect the political situation in Haiti?
- What were the principle events that lead to the slave revolt in Haiti? Which events / incidents indirectly contributed to the revolt?
- What characteristics did Toussaint possess that contributed to his becoming a leader?
- Compare and contrast Toussaint's leadership qualities with those of a current world leader.
- Why do you think Toussaint abandoned his normal cautionary measures when he agreed to meet with Leclerc?
- Explain what Napoleon meant when he said: "I have to reproach myself with the attempt made upon the colony, . . . I ought to have been satisfied with governing it through the medium of Toussaint."
- Write an essay describing in what ways Toussaint's prediction came true: "In overthrowing me they have cut off only the trunk of black liberty. It will flourish again through its roots. They are many, and they are deep."
- Do you agree with Dessalines about how and why he established a new flag for Haiti? Would you have done the same? (Note: Prepare for this activity by asking students why a flag is an important emblem / symbol for a country.)
- Draw a simple chart that explains visually how Haitian Creole developed.
Have students debate the following: Creole should be made the official language of Haiti.
Bring books to class with colored images of Haiti today. Read the story of the two donkeys. Figure out a dialogue so that the students can produce a play based on the tale. Have students use the pictures of people and places in the books to recreate simple props and costumes for the students. Perform the play for another class.
Read the sidebar about voodoo on page 23. Assign a student or group of students to research the topic in the school or local library, and then have the student / group present its findings to the class.
Check out the volunteer health services in your area. Make contact with someone in the company to find out what the service provides or get a brochure. After reading about the Haitian Health Foundation on pages 44 - 47, compare and contrast it with one of the volunteer health services in your area.
Listen to the National Anthem of Haiti here!