“Only those who will risk going too far can possibly find out how far one can go.” ~ T.S. Eliot
Accomplish this goal: Have your students join a global project or start a project to spread peace. Students can also create and spread messages of peace through social media via a graphic, digital poster, or video. Try digital poster or graphic tools to create your projects, such as EduBuncee, Flowvella, Sway, HaikuDeck, Adobe Slate, Canva, Tackk, Visme, Smore, ThingLink, Biteslides, and EduGlogster. Spread messages through short videos created with Instagram, Animoto, Magisto, Powtoon, Voicethread, iMovie, Windows Movie Maker, or WeVideo. Below, I have listed the steps to problem based learning and several resources.
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One of my favorite kids on social media is Kid President who spreads encouraging messages for other young learners to be awesome and make a positive impact on the world. I’m sure you’ve seen this inspiring video. I believe when our learners see this 8 year-old’s impact (the age he started), they are inspired to be a positive force. We need more of our students to care enough to be peace advocates. Our learners have the ability to transform their world by thinking of ideas to deal with world issues and spread these ideas on social media. Will you be the teacher to allow them the opportunity to transform the world or will you be like so many who put up obstacles or say it isn’t in the curriculum? I have heard way too many students say their principals and teachers failed them or made their road to transforming the world difficult. Students can both learn and spread peace. Below, are ideas to help you be a facilitator and support to your learners.
Steps to Problem Based Learning
- Introduce the problem
- Make it a powerful story that strikes an emotional chord.
- Introduce the problem by showing a video, through a blog post, take them through a case study, analyze an infographic, or have them play an online game. Scroll to Resources to discover games and other sites.
- At this point, give students their mission with guidelines. See my presentations and posts on sending students on learning missions. Keep it short and simple so students understand the task. You can include the solution product or leave that open and allow them to decide how to solve the problem.
- Give students time to reflect on the problem in pairs or groups. Find a variety of brainstorming tools here.
- Introduce the problem
- Problem Research
- Students should learn about the problem through digital research. Some options for learning about the problem through primary sources include having students conduct interviews, create and distribute surveys, study a hashtag, or Skype with experts.
- Various online tools- http://pear.ly/bP38v
- Teach digital literacy, evaluation of online resources, bookmarking, curation, and annotation
- You can give them the solution and guidelines when you introduce the problem. Examples may include, create a digital campaign or poster, make a Public Service Announcement (PSA), create an online game, create an ebook, organize an online project, create an advertisement, make a video, develop a product, design an app, host an event, create an infographic, or create a social network.
- Generating solutions- in pairs/groups, students brainstorm possible solutions and the steps involved in implementing the solution
- Students present the solution, reflect on the process of implementing the solution, and discuss it’s impact
Find a list of games, websites, and projects for learning about other cultures and researching world problems to help students create their messages of peace. Some of the projects may have expired, but you can get lesson ideas and see student examples:
- Students Rebuild– an organization with different projects for students to join to bring peace worldwide. Check out the latest project to help Syrian refugees.
- The A to Z of Hope Heart Project– ELT authors worldwide are donating one activity for a book that will raise funds for Syrian refugees. I am excited to be one of those authors.
- Kids for Peace– find several missions, community projects, and events servicing over 5 million students worldwide.
- Several schools participate in the Great Kindness Challenge with a list of 50 activities to choose from to complete in a week.
- The most recent project is Kindness Coins for Kenya to help build a school in Kenya. See how your students can get involved.
- Check out their Artists in Action section with ways to spread peace through art.
- Check out the Peace Heroes section to introduce students to incredible people who are peace activists.
- Identify a natural disaster in another country and get students to raise funds.
- Kids for a Peaceful World– discover how to start a peace club at your school and other projects.
- Welcome to Wanzuzu– this is a game by the Peace Corps for students to play where they help the village of Wanzuzu by making decisions.
- FreeRice– for every answer students get right 10 grains of rice are donated to end hunger.
- 7 Billion Others– website full of video interviews of people around the world sharing powerful stories.
- Project Kiva– Help raise funds for people around the world.
- Project Peace– Students are encouraged to make videos for peace. Expired, but you can see student examples, including lip dubs of peace songs.
- Let’s Peace Talk Through the Arts by Georgia Psarra
- Greetings from Around the World by Arjana Blazic
- Celebrate You and Me Digitally by Eva Büyüksimkeşyan and Alexandra Francisco
- Tip: Students can encourage their community to visit smile.amazon.com and donate to various causes while shopping instead of just Amazon via Noel Geisel
New to The 30 Goals Challenge? Each year, teachers worldwide aim to accomplish 1 to 30 goals that transform their teaching. Join the movement by accomplishing any goal from any of the cycles then letting us know through a blog reflection or status update on our Facebook community or on Twitter,@30GoalsEdu . At our official site, 30Goals.com, find all the goals, participant reflections, badges, and get your copy of The 30 Goals for Teachers: Small Steps to Transform Your Classroom workbook.
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