Before we talk "about the author," I'd like to talk about how I compose an Awesome Story. In other words ... what can you expect to find at AwesomeStories (and how can you use this teaching/learning site)?
As a court room lawyer whose job it is to tell juries and judges about cases, I ask questions ... lots of questions. Of the many possible things that the judge and jury need to know, I try to give them what they need to decide a case. I always use primary sources: witnesses with testimony; pictures and videos which tell their own story; related pieces of evidence (such as objects, maps, documents, etc.).
In a court of law, we also rely on secondary evidence such as experts with opinions (who explain their interpretation of facts); books (by authors who also have opinions on a host of topics); etc.
And ... during a court-room appearance ... I frequently use demonstrative aids to help people understand difficult points (and to see how various topics relate to each other). Time lines, animations, explanatory drawings and other demonstrative tools are really helpful to explain "the big picture."
So ... at AwesomeStories ... you will find much of the same. We rely on primary sources to help everyone understand what people at the time (especially those individuals actually involved in events) were saying and doing. We provide varying points of view, to help our readers engage in multiple levels of fact-finding. We don't provide our opinions, leaving that to site users to determine for themselves.
We use MANY images to illustrate stories, both on pages themselves and in the "Media Stream" which you will see on the right side of most pages. Not only are pictures interesting to see, they expand our knowledge about the words on a page. Studying pictures allows us to stop reading for a bit, allowing time to reflect on the topic at hand.
You will see many questions in the story narratives. Those questions help to move the story along, but they also serve as "headliners" for where we're going next. And ... just like in court, where we try to anticipate questions which jurors may have but are not allowed to ask until they actually "get the case" for decision-making ... we try to include questions which site users are likely to have as a story moves forward.
Questions in the story text (which are also rhetorical, from time to time) are different from the "Issues and Questions to Ponder" which appear at the end of many chapters now (and will soon be available for each chapter site-wide). Those "Ponder ?" are intended to take site users deeper into topics. They are critical-thinking questions which could serve as essay topics, discussion topics or thought topics. They compare and contrast things.
"Ponder" questions often have no easy answers, especially when they juxtapose competing ideas and rights. They are intended to cause debate, to raise arguments, to expand topics, to consider issues which go beyond the story-at-hand.
At AwesomeStories, we also have a team of accomplished educators who match the stories with curriculum requirements. All the stories are aligned to state standards and common-core requirements. Our educator-team creates learning tasks, and our new GOLD platform allows member-educators to use AwesomeStories in many different and exciting ways. (See our Teacher and Student pages to learn the specifics about those options).
Now ... a bit about me ... a court room lawyer called Carole Bos whose greatest passion in life is helping educators to teach and students to learn. In presenting the rest of this "About the Author," we'll switch from the first person to the third person.
Carole Bos has a Bachelor of Arts Degree (with highest honors) in History and Russian Studies. On graduation from Grand Valley State University, in 1977, she received a special "Honors Award" in her chosen field and was also designated "Breen Scholar."
Bos holds a Juris Doctor degree, with honors, which she received in 1981. She was a member of the Thomas M. Cooley Law Review and a recipient of the Distinguished Student Award. In 1989, Bos received a Distinguished Alumna Award from her undergraduate institution and has been listed in numerous "Who's Who" publications throughout her career.
Since her 1981 graduation from law school, Carole established a law firm, Bos & Glazier, where she is a trial lawyer. She has served as lead counsel on numerous high-profile cases in Michigan and throughout the country. Appointed Special Attorney to the United States Attorney General in 1997, she served in that capacity for more than two years.
Bos has received numerous professional honors, has been designated a "Super Lawyer" for many years, is consistently voted among the "Best Lawyers in America" (as is her law firm), is considered one of America's "Preeminent Lawyers" by her peers and has been recognized as one of "America's Most Honored Professionals."
Author of two poetry books, Bos co-wrote the 1985 pioneering text How to Use Video in Litigation, contributed to How Women Succeed in Practice and the Courtroom and is a longstanding contributor to Introducing Evidence, a legal textbook.
A frequent author of professional journal articles, a radio commentator on famous trials and a national keynote speaker, Bos created Awesome Stories (with its focus on primary sources) in early 1999.
She is currently the lead writer for all stories on the site which are meticulously researched and verified by the AwesomeStories.com team.
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