Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Making the World AWESOME!

One of my goals every year in my class is to inspire my students to do more than just be nice but to also dream about all the ways that they can make the world a better place. Young students are naturally conscientious, thoughtful and optimistic. Part of the joy of teaching them is learning about what things they love and care about and channeling those things into making them better learners, better people, and better citizens. That's how these units came about.
I'm a Kid President super fan. Isn't everyone? 
My very favorite Kid President video is Make the World More Awesome

After watching this video I have my students make a list of causes they care about.
After listing all of the causes near and dear to our hearts I explain to the kids about how to fight for them. There aren't a lot of resources available for little learners about activism. Many books and videos are over the kids' heads or deal with subject matter that could be confusing or upsetting. Then it dawned on me! The West brothers!
The West family is a local family that have done amazing things for our community and the world. I was lucky enough to have Jeremiah and Joshua West visit my classroom 2 years ago to read a book they wrote: Champions of Change: Live to Give
This is a story by children, for children. Joshua and Jeremiah do a wonderful job inspiring the reader with all sorts of ideas about how young people can be agents of change in their community. I love this story because my students are always so fascinated to know that it was written by kids who work so hard to fight for causes they care about.
I love to inspire my students by showing them people who have done amazing things with their lives and ideas. We talk a lot about what it means to be an activist. I designed this unit to further our discussions and introduce the idea that even kids can be activists.
You'll find a mini-book, vocabulary cards and a cut & paste worksheet to introduce activism to your little learners. The vocabulary cards can be used to make anchor charts or word sorts. The book is great for small groups or whole group instruction. I even envision after-school clubs being able to use these resources to come up with school projects and community action projects.
You will also find a writing activity and project as a culmination for this mini-unit. It is my sincere belief the the children are our future and hope for the world. As teachers I think our responsibility to help guide and inspire these young minds to do good in the world is even more urgent than ever. I hope your students learn new ways to fight for their causes and are empowered to think their voices and actions matter no matter how "big" they are. These kids will make this world AWESOME!
If you're interested in this unit you can find it here:
and the writing activity and craft for FREE here

These activities were also inspired by an even larger project #kindnessnation and #weholdthesetruths
The election season and following results have left a lot for some to desire. Life goes on, disappointment is dealt with, and change occurs. Our hope is that through this inevitable change we continue to teach and inspire our children to be kind, to be responsible, and most importantly of all, to be active participants in their communities. You will find MANY forever freebies by searching Teachers Pay Teachers using these hashtags #kindnessnation and #weholdthesetruths
Thank you, teachers. Thank you for all of your hard work making this world AWESOME!