The Silver Scorpion in Lebanon: Increasing Disability Awareness & Tolerance in Schools

You may remember how the Silver Scorpion was distributed to schools across Egypt last year through the help of the Egyptian Association for Educational Resources (E-Era). Now, with the cooperation and partnership of the International Education Association of Lebanon (IEA), the comic book is making its way into the hands of teachers and students in Beirut in order to promote education, cross-cultural understanding, and disability rights and awareness.

Arabic Cover of the Silver Scorpion Comic Book

The Silver Scorpion in Arabic

To date, the Silver Scorpion comic book has been the centerpiece of two teaching workshops in Lebanon, made possible through IEA. The first meeting took place as part of the November 13 SchoolNet Workshop at the Ministry of Education and Higher Education of Lebanon, and the second at the Radisson on December 1, 2012. Through these half-day workshops, teachers gathered to learn about the comic book’s core messages, like tolerance, inclusion, and what it means to overcome the challenges of living with a disability.

More teachers at workshop

Teachers discuss the comic book at the workshop.

Along with discussing themes of equality and overcoming bias, the teachers brainstormed ideas on how best to apply the message of the comic book in their own classrooms. One of the ways to relate the concept of inclusion and open-mindedness is to use the comic as an impetus to stimulate creativity through writing and art. With the comic book as a starting point, students will have the chance to explore the book’s ideas, but also to springboard into their own stories of what it means to be a superhero, to have a disability, or to accept those who may be different than them.

Sharing the comic book

Getting to know the Silver Scorpion.

The Open Hands Initiative has printed and distributed more than 15,000 copies of the comic book in Arabic. A portion of these will be distributed to select schools in Beirut and throughout Lebanon, where the story of the Silver Scorpion will be shared with students in middle and high school.

Teachers observing the workshop

Teachers observe the workshop.

Lastly, pursuant to IEA’s emphasis on digital learning and technology, a wiki devoted to the Silver Scorpion was created as a means for the teachers to continue to interact with the story and its content, as well as to create a space for new student stories, original drawings and ideas related to the Silver Scorpion. Through this digital story writing endeavor, the Silver Scorpion will have the opportunity to continue sharing its message of inclusion, tolerance, and cross-cultural understanding with the people of the world.

Deepening understanding of the themes

Understanding the comic book’s themes.

About IEA

The International Education Association, home of iEARN Lebanon, is dedicated to engaging educators and youth in collaborative learning and active educational projects. Its mission is to “enhance the learning and teaching process through the effective use of communication technologies so that educators and youth acquire the 21st century skills necessary to excel in a globally competitive world; for youth, critical analysis, language, technology and leadership and life skills; for educators, transformative, active and inclusive education.” To learn more about IEA’s projects and methodology, please visit www.iea.org.lb.

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