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  • I didn’t know what to expect at the Imperial War Museum in London. I had passed it many times during my visits to London, but had never gone in, and it was not on my top ten things to do list; it was more on my “oops, I am leaving London and I wonder what is in that museum” list. The Imperial Museum is a fascinating place that all educators should go see, both alone and while teaching children. Human history is the history of war. This is a tragic but true fact of life. Upon entering the Museum, one sees the wreck of a car. It is a hulking, rusted wreck of a modern car, probably a Volvo. It appears to have been crushed in a junk yard and the viewer immediately begins to wonder what it is doing at the entrance of this museum. Two docents hover nearby, ready to explain. Like an onion, the history of the car is revealed as layer after layer is unfolded.
    The car was parked in a well-known book market in Bagdad. A car bomb exploded nearby. The air was sucked out of the car by the vacuum created by the explosion. Glass shattered. Thirty-eight people were killed by the blast. Many of those who were wounded later died of their injuries. Others were emotionally damaged forever, including one bookseller who lost four children in the blast.
    The blast was so unpopular that no one ever claimed responsibility for it. Who were the intended victims? Did it target the Shia who dominated the neighborhood? Did it aim for the intellectuals who shopped there for books in Arabic, Persian, English, French, Italian and other languages? Was it a message for the secular Iraqis who read books instead of the Koran? Did it aim to call attention to the origin of the street where it exploded, Al-Mutanabbi, a street named after a great Iraqi 9th century poet who once claimed that the words in his poems were greater than the words of the Koran?
    Officially, the car is known as “Baghdad, 5 March 2007: A New Display with Jeremy Deller” and is from his “It Is What It Is” exhibit which was on display in various venues in the United States before being donated by the New Museum of New York. More information is available at www.iwm.org.uk/baghdadcar .
     

  • Dear Visitors,

    Our purpose at East-West School is twofold:
    1. To prepare our students for college.
    2. To prepare our graduates to be successful in a world in which Asia will continue to grow in importance.

    We accomplish this by examining data on our students and using it to guide our instruction so that we can move our students along a seven-year continuum. We continuously improve the reading, writing, and math skills of our students while continually raising the bar of what we expect them to do.

    On the Asian side, besides having our students study Korean, Japanese, or Chinese language each day, we purposely seek to make ongoing connections between those countries and cultures and what we are teaching in all of our classes. We also try to make comparisons to our own cultures.

    We are a liberal arts school with a strong arts component.   Besides our intensive language program, we offer Drama, Art, and Korean drumming. Each year there is a summer trip to an Asian country. Our 10th and 11th graders all have online mentors through iMentor.

    At East-West School, we all care deeply about our students. We really want them to excel. Our teachers work very hard to provide creative learning experiences. Our test scores show the results. Most importantly is our graduation data. In the year 2010, we graduated 94% of our high school Seniors with 99%  continuing on to college and one joining the Navy. This is evidence of our success with our students.  

    We still have a lot to learn. Let's do it together.

    Sincerely,

    Benjamin Sherman

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