[kids-lib] ** Essay contest now open ** MS & HS teens can watch an Oregon documentary, write an essay and win money! (Deadline March 1)
deborah.gitlitz at gmail.com
Wed Jan 3 15:54:49 PST 2018
***please pardon the cross-posting***
The Minoru Yasui Day Essay Contest is now open for submissions!
Folks who work with teens/students, take note! Here’s a chance for your
middle or high school teens to win money -- and learn important facts about
Oregon history and civil rights at the same time.
What: The 2018 Minoru Yasui Day Essay Contest (deadline: March 1)
What Makes It Useful, Interesting, and Easy for You to Take Advantage Of:
Free, streaming, primary-source-based, inspiring, one-hour documentary.
(Common Core connection!)
The film is about Oregon lawyer Minoru Yasui and the Japanese
American internment during World War II.
Based in Oregon history and pertinent to current events.
Teens can write an essay for a chance to win cash.
Works as a library program or in partnership with a classroom. (Curriculum
Teens watch a short, free documentary film about civil rights history in
The film is Never Give Up! Minoru Yasui and the Fight for Justice.
It’s about the US government’s internment of Japanese-American
Oregonians during WWII, and Min Yasui’s legal challenge to that practice.
Lots of interesting footage and live interviews.
Educators (including librarians) can get a link to screen the
documentary for free.
Here are just a few of the ways you might use the documentary:
Show it at your library.
Stream it and discuss it at a Teen Council or TAB meeting.
Partner with teachers to show it in the classroom.
Discuss it with a book group.
The documentary and its related websites are chock full of primary
source materials -- great for supporting teachers and students with the
Common Core standards.
Teens who submit an essay by March 1 have the chance to win a cash
prize, have their work web published, and read their essay in Portland on
March 28, designated by the state legislature as Minoru Yasui Day in Oregon
(travel subsidies to Portland provided).
What Do I Do Next?
To access the film online, or to ask other questions, simply contact
Holly Yasui at info at minoruyasuifilm.org
The Min Yasui legacy project and Oregon Nikkei Endowment are sponsoring the
2018 Minoru Yasui Day Essay Contest, open to all Oregon middle-school and
high-school students. Please see: https://www.minoruyasuitribute.org/
essaycontest for complete contest rules, and http://www.minoruyasuifilm.
org/oregon-projects for a flyer. Educators including librarians and
teachers are encouraged to screen the new documentary film, Never Give Up!
Minoru Yasui and the Fight for Justice (www.minoruyasuifilm.org) and to
help students to prepare their essays, which will be accepted from January
1 – March 1, 2018, by discussing the resource materials available on the
Minoru Yasui Tribute website, and responding to the essay prompt, which is:
“Explain the lessons learned from the life and legacy of Minoru Yasui and
the incarceration of Japanese Americans during World War II. How do those
lessons inform your position on current U.S. policies on immigration and
The film can be accessed online by contacting Holly Yasui at
info at minoruyasuifilm.org. Other resource materials are available at
https://www.minoruyasuitribute.org/copy-of-resources, including copies of
legal and historical documents related to Yasui’s legal case; unpublished
writings by Yasui himself and others; and a bibliography, filmography and
list of internet websites containing extensive information about Min Yasui.
Middle-school curriculum materials for teachers are available through the
Oregon Nikkei Legacy Center, please contact Cynthia Bayse at
cynthia at oregonnikkei.org.
Minoru Yasui was the first Japanese American attorney in Oregon, and in
1942, he challenged the discriminatory military orders that led to the
forced removal of all persons of Japanese ancestry from the West Coast and
their imprisonment in War Relocation Authority (WRA) camps inland. He spent
9 months in solitary confinement in the Multnomah County Jail awaiting his
appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court which, in 1943, ruled against him. In
spite of the great injustices that he, his family and community endured,
Minoru Yasui continued for the rest of his life to defend the democratic
ideals upon which our country was founded, and the human and civil rights
of all people. In 2015, President Barack Obama posthumously awarded Minoru
Yasui the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the first and only Oregonian to
receive that highest civilian honor in the nation. In 2016, the Oregon
State Legislature voted unanimously to designate March 28 – the day he
initiated his legal test case – as Minoru Yasui Day.
The Essay Contest winners in both the middle-school and high-school
categories will receive cash prizes and their work will be published in the
Minoru Yasui Tribute Project webpage. First place winners and runners up
will receive travel subsidies in order to read their work at a special
awards ceremony in Portland on Minoru Yasui Day, March 28, 2018.
*Posted on behalf of Holly Yasui, film director, who would like to
encourage students to participate in the essay contest. *
*Bilingual Outreach and Youth Services Librarian*
*Early Literacy Trainer*
*Library Youth Services Consultant*
deborah.gitlitz at gmail.com
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