An Overview of Before Enlisting's Online Program
*Send any questions and concerns to beforeenlisting(at)gmail(dot)com
Goal: Students will have the information they need to make well-informed decisions about enlisting in the military. They will be able evaluate the accuracy and completeness of information given by recruiters, and know where to find information about alternatives to college and military service.
Student level: Grades 10 through community college. For grade 10, we recommend that the Before You Enlist! video be shown in-class or by Zoom, where students can interact immediately after seeing it.
Technology needed: This online version of the Before Enlisting program is designed for mostly independent work using a computer or tablet at home. Students will need a platform to interact in pairs or small groups, though not necessarily during online class sessions. It can be as simple as students sharing their phone numbers with a learning partner. Minimally, a small amount of class meeting time would be spent in introducing the program and video, and debriefing it.
Components of the Online Program:
· An introduction to the program for students and teachers. (Found below)
· A basic lesson plan for approximately 1.5 hours of mostly independent work, with additional optional segments to deepen and extend understanding. (Found below)
· A link to Before You Enlist! (16-minute video)
*About the Before You Enlist! Video
This 16-minute video, the core of our program, features combat veterans talking about their experiences during training, deployment and beyond. Other speakers include parents of veterans killed or hurt in action. Parts of Before You Enlist! are emotionally difficult to watch—live footage from war zones and personal stories of post-traumatic stress and of sexual assault—but it’s important in that it demonstrates how different the reality of service can be, especially during wartime, from the alluring portrayal presented by recruiters. Since most schools provide access to military recruiters, it is crucial that students also learn about the human price that can come with military service.
· A pre/post video quiz to help students retain essential information rather than for grading. (Found below)
· Several short supplemental videos. Bay Area vets share their personal experiences. Other Bay Area experts offer information related to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD), Military Sexual Trauma, Moral Injury, and the G.I. Rights Hotline. We also offer the option of a guest speaker(s) by Zoom.
· A choice of several writing assignments. designed to summarize and synthesize what was learned. We offer a student relection format to use with the videos, a few writing assignments designed to summarize and synthesize what was learned, and a couple optional research/writing assignments that connect to Psychology/Heath and Career Education. (See Suggested Writing Assignments below.)
· Information about alternatives to college and the military including a video from the building trades unions designed to recruit girls into apprenticeships programs.
· A printable handout about what to ask recruiters before enlisting and the responses they should give. (Found in the link, and below.)
Below, you will find all of the components of our online program that we have developed specifically for teachers. However, the list does not include components that are links (the Before You Enlist! video, our supplemental video playlist, the page outlining alternative career and education options. We have also built a page you can send students to that has just the Before You Enlist! video, the quiz connected to the video, and the various writing assignments. Find the For Students page here.
The below documents are all in pdf form. Feel free to open, save and print them.