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Global citizenship- how to make children see they can make a difference globally.

Discussion in 'Primary' started by teejay100000, Apr 27, 2011.

  1. In what way? How do you know? Who asked you to try to make that "difference"? Who paid you to do it? Did you actually teach the children anything useful?
  2. Before we began we took a survey of the childrens' attitudes including activities that would identify any stereotypes they might have, what they knew about the continent of Africa (often portrayed as one country). These were then followed up on to see how their attitudes and awareness changed. We found particularly as the children got older that when asked what job they may do from a given selection that they would respond along the lines of not being able to tell whereas previously they may have jumped to conclusion based on associations they may have previously made. With the activity labelling Africa all ages showed a better undertsanding of the huge numbers of similarities as well as moving away from the concept of Africa the country instead of Africa the continent.
    The project was undertaken as part of whole school development so aside from the fact we are paid to teach we were not paid anything. Teaching involved brining in a balance e.g. for every unique part of another countries culture we would also demonstrate where there would be a similaritie e.g. in lifestyle, housing etc. The project has been carried out as an embedded part of the curriculum not as an explicit subject. However, intially, some of the teaching around Children's Rights was more explicit.
    We also looked at how we could wean the children off the view that by giving money to charity we can solve the porblem. This was where an activity such as Send My Sister to School came in as many children immediately suggested raising money for a charity e.g. Shelterbox to children who do not have shelter after disasters. However, for many of them they couldn't see how their one letter would make any difference. By involving them as part of a wider written campaign it has helped them to see that there are other ways to cause a change not just giving money. This is where the aspect of citizenship comes in. If you look at the current attitude to voting (which will probably be reflected in this week's local council and AV voting) as teacher's we should be looking at ways to engage children with issues with the aim of making them more active citizens when they get to adulthood.
    I hope this addresses your questions. If you'd like any more specific examples of work or how we have developed the curriculum to increase awareness of global issues, as well as local ones, please let me know.

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