1. What activity did you select to use for your global assignment?

For this assignment, I chose to use ePals to connect with students in other countries. I chose to use this resource because it is an easy way to meet other students, but more importantly, it is seems like a safe resource to use. When connecting with other classrooms, there are a number of safety concerns that must be considered. You never know who you're actually communicating with when it is done via the Internet. This website, however, seems very safe.

2. Describe the activity.

For this lessons, my 4th graders will first watchi the Arthur video "Dear Adil" from PBS Kids. This video is a great way to introduce global thinking on a "kid friendly" level. Most of my students have probably never considered that life if very different from the American way of life in other countries.

Next, I will have my student complete the United Kingdom Cultural Quiz to test their knowledge and misconceptions about people from the UK. I imagine that because the US and the UK both speak English, my students will think that things are relatively the same in both countries.

Next, students will meet in cooperative groups, develop a set of interview questions, and interview their new pen pals from the United Kingdom! They will complete a graphic organizer comparing life as a 4th grader in the United States and in the United Kingdom.

After completing their interviews, students will create a PowerPoint presentation and orally present their findings to the class.

3. Describe how the lesson is considered global awareness.

This lesson is considered global awareness because my students have likely never considered that life is different in other countries. Our class has focused on social studies quite a bit this year as we prepare for our 4th grade DCAS. However, most of what we have done has centered around the United States. In the global world that we live in, it is important that students begin to understand that there is more to the world than what they are used to. It is also important that students begin to understand the complex concepts of tolerance and acceptance.

4. Describe how you incorporate that activity into your classroom.

We will be completing this activity during our social studies time this week. In my classroom, we have been studying the Revolutionary War extensively. We have looked at the causes of the war and the British rule. During this time period, the British were often thought of in a poor light. Meeting students from the UK will only enlighten our discussions as we look at how life and our attitudes toward the British have changed since Revolutionary times.

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Replies to This Discussion

Jessica,

I also chose to create an ePals lesson for our global awareness project. Like you I chose it because I feel that the ePals website is a safe and reliable website to use in school for communicating with students in other countries. Many students will never get this opportunity nor will they get the opportunity to leave the country and travel around the world to these countries this is a great way for them to learn about other cultures. I like that you have your students watch a video I did not have mine do this I had them write a KWL chart on their country so I could see what they know already and what they want to learn. Great lesson, thanks for sharing!

Jerica,

I love this idea for fourth graders! Since I teach at the high school level I don’t really think about them not understanding that there are different cultures around the world. I think it’s a great idea to get them thinking about it at a young age and how different each culture is. I also like how you did the UK since we both speak English. I feel like even my high schoolers sometimes think we are the same as some places in Europe. 

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