A pathfinder is just the beginning of building your bibliography.

Africa, World Book Encyclopedia. 2010

What if you heard that if you bought the latest and greatest cell phone, you were contributing to the death of a person in sub-Saharan Africa? Would it influence your decision? In Africa today there are many internal conflicts that result from competition over highly coveted resources. From oil to diamonds to materials used to build cell phones and computers, Africa has the potential to become a profitable developing continent. However, this potential is being compromised by life threatening working conditions, slave labor and even war.
For the next 4-5 weeks you are all going to be engaging in an in-class campaign to become experts on one of these crises. You will be broken up into teams and there will be a campaign manager who will lead each team. Ultimately you will be producing a presentation to be shown to the class, some faculty and maybe even local community.

  • To what extent do American consumers play a role in instability in Africa?
  • What kind of responsibilities do we have, as Americans, to be aware of how products in Africa are made?
  • To have you all gain awareness of how our consumer decisions impact the world at large, in particular, the continent of Africa. You will also be provided with the opportunity to inform others about these important issues.
  • Skeptical group of High School students/community who don’t want to change spending habits
  • Diamonds, cell phones, computers, oil
  1. Outline: Answering organizing questions. (SKILLS: thesis writing; research skills; outline building)
  2. Multi-media slideshow (SKILLS: how to make skillful multi-media presentation with powerpoint; focus on do’s and don’ts of powerpoint)
  3. Panel Presentation: To class and potentially faculty/community (SKILLS: Oral communication skills while using multi-media)
  4. Final 2 page Position Paper applied to similar issue in different country (SKILLS: writing skills)

Your teachers have put together a resource sheet that you should use for this project. You should also use the resources listed below.

Reference materials

This is the place to start any research project. Reference books such as encyclopedias offer short, authoritative information on every topic. These books are located upstairs in the LMC. They cannot leave the library.

Type search term in to find e-books.

  • REF 960.03 NEW New Encyclopedia of Africa. Vol. 1-5. 2008.
  • REF 967 H History of Central Africa. 2003. Summary: Chronicles Central Africa's history, Luba-Lunda states, nineteenth-century explorers and missionaries, colonialism, wars, coups, dictatorships, post-independence society and economics, and twenty-first-century issues.
  • Encyclopaedia Britannica

Non-Fiction Books

We have many non-fiction books about this topic are found in various sections of the library. Be sure to do a keyword search using the online catalog (Destiny) to find more materials.
  • 338.2 D Diamonds and Conflict: problems and solutions. Levy, A.
  • 968.94 M Diamonds, gold, and war : the British, the Boers, and the making of South Africa. Meredith, M.
  • 968.06 L South Africa: No easy path to peace.

WHS databases

Log into any of these databases by clicking on the link. If you are away from home, you will have to use a remote username and/or password. These can be found on the Library Media Center brochure. Make sure to take one home before leaving school!!
  • SIRS Issues Researcher Great for finding current information about controversial and international issues.
  • Student Edition- Infotrac resource for finding reference, news, multimedia and primary source resources on all subjects.
  • U.S. History in Context provides access to over 4,000 historical (primary) documents, articles from more than 30 reference titles, and over 110 full-text journal covering themes, events, individuals and periods in U.S. history from pre-Colonial times to the present.

Internet sites

Resource sheet List of resources that the CWC teachers put together specific to this project.

BPL: electronic resources

You will need a BPL e-card in order to access these databases. Ask Ms. Dalbec if you need help applying for a card.
  • Virtual Reference Library - Includes more than 90 encyclopedias, plus numerous specialized reference sources covering a diversity of subjects including Arts, Biography, Business, Education, Environment, History, Law, Literature, Medicine, Multicultural Studies, Nation & World, Religion, Science, and Social Science. Some "Junior" sources included as well.