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Surprises in South Africa

Growing Up Global: Early Years Global Education Handbook

Elementary, Secondary, Middle

Description

Surprises in South Africa is part of a larger compilation entitled Growing Up Global: Early Years Global Education Handbook. This resource book and supporting CD demonstrates how global education can be introduced to students at a very young age (five and under) through the use of fun activities such as songs, games, poems and recipes. The resource contains background information, suggested activities, such as songs and games, stories, book lists, useful website links, ideas for extension learning and a resource CD with pictures, colour photos and reproducible sheets.

Surprises in South Africa provides a simple look at the country and its culture through a variety of hands-on activities, crafts, music, stories and games.

Puzzle of Map of Africa - Students identify Africa on a globe or map. Students colour or make a collage on a map of Africa.

Flags- Students learn the symbolic meaning of the flags. The identlfy the shapes and colours found in their country's flag and that of South Africa. They reproduce the South African flag using different materials. Together they create a flag for their class that makes everyone feel included.

Making a Painted House- Students create a house painted in the Ndebele style that expresses their own identities.

Making a Chicken - Students learn about the importance of the chicken in South Africa. Together the class sews a chicken out of fabric strips.

Celebrating Diversity - Students brainstorm similarities between their country and South Africa. They create a collage that celebrates diversity.

Making a Journey - Students listen to stories from South Africa to inspire them to think about journeys. They take a journey outdoors or in the classroom and collect items along the way that represents their journey.

General Assessment

What skills does this resource explicitly teach?

  • To develop students' awareness of the wider world through cultural similarities and differences.
  • To learn about and appreciate the South African culture.

Strengths

  • The activities are very age-appropriate for students five and under.
  • The resource is available to download immediately.
  • Well organized, easy to use and supplies all necessary materials.
  • Excellent background information, list of website links and extensive book list.
  • Each lesson plan includes learning objectives, goals, materials needed and detailed teaching instructions.
  • Each lesson plan includes a hands-on activity.

Weaknesses

  • The activities suggested do not always attain their learning objectives.
  • No opportunities for students to share what they have learned with their parents or peers.
  • No assessment methods/rubrics provided
  • The resource lacks a significant action component.
  • No case studies to reflect the South African culture.
  • Relevant Curriculum Units

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    • Alberta
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          • Exploring connections strengthens our understandings of relationships to help us make meaning of the world
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          • Exploring connections strengthens our understandings of relationships to help us make meaning of the world.
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          • Global Indigenous Peoples: People from diverse cultures and societies share some common experiences and aspects of life.
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          • You and Your World:Place and Community
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          • To construct his/her representation of space, time and society
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          • Global Indigenous Peoples: People from diverse cultures and societies share some common experiences and aspects of life.

    Themes Addressed

    • Human Rights (2)

      • Cultural Diversity
      • Social Justice

    Sustainability Education Principles

    Principle Rating Explanation
    Consideration of Alternative Perspectives Satisfactory
    • The background information provides information about South Africa and the issues of racism and inequality. Teachers are encouraged to try and help these young children explore issues of prejudice, racism and justice using stories and puppets.
    Consideration of Alternative Perspectives:
    • Satisfactory: absence of bias towards any one point of view
    • Good: students consider different points of view regarding issues, problems discussed
    • Very good: based on the consideration of different views, students form opinions and  take an informed position
    Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions Poor/Not considered
    • Not considered in this resource.
    Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:

    Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.

    • Satisfactory: resource supports the examination of  these dimensions
    • Good:  resource explicitly examines the interplay of these dimensions
    • Very Good:  a systems-thinking approach is encouraged to examine these three dimensions
    Respects Complexity Poor/Not considered
    • Not considered in this resource.
    Respects Complexity:

    The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.

    Acting on Learning Poor/Not considered
    Acting on Learning:

    Learning moves from understanding  issues  to working towards positive change — in personal lifestyle, in school, in the community,  or for the planet

    • Satisfactory: action opportunities are included as extensions 
    • Good: action opportunities are core components of the resource
    • Very Good: action opportunities for students are well supported and intended to result in observable, positive change
    Values Education Poor/Not considered
    Values Education:

    Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.

    Empathy & Respect for Humans Good
    • The stories in this resource have been chosen to reflect the racial diversity of South Africa.
    Empathy & Respect for Humans: Empathy and respect are fostered for diverse groups of humans (including different genders, ethnic groups, sexual preferences, etc.).
    Personal Affinity with Earth Satisfactory
    • The students take a journey outdoors in a garden or park.
    Personal Affinity with Earth:

    Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.  

    • Satisfactory: connection is made to the natural world
    • Good: fosters appreciation/concern for the natural world
    • Very Good: fosters stewardship though practical and respectful experiences out-of-doors 
    Locally-Focused Learning Good
    • Students learn the similarities and differences between their country and South Africa. The activities develop the student's awareness of a wider world.
    Locally-Focused Learning:

    Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community. 

    • Satisfactory: learning is made relevant to the lives of the learners
    • Good: learning is made relevant and has a local focus
    • Very Good: learning is made relevant, local and takes place ‘outside’ , in the community 
    Past, Present & Future Satisfactory
    • The background information section includes some information regarding the past and the present South Africa.
    Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.

    Pedagogical Approaches

    Principle Rating Explanation
    Open-Ended Instruction Good
    • The activities in the lessons are very hands-on and promote the idea that we have a lot to learn from South Africa as they do from us. The activities and stories invite a lot of discussion opportunities.
    Open-Ended Instruction :

    Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.

    Integrated Learning Good
    • Language Arts
    • Art
    • Music
    • Social studies
    • Geography
    Integrated Learning:

    Learning brings together content and skills  from more than one  subject area

    • Satisfactory: content from a number of different  subject areas is readily identifiable
    • Good:  resource is appropriate for use in more than one subject area
    • Very Good:  the lines between subjects are blurred 
    Inquiry Learning Satisfactory
    • The activites are very hands-on, but teacher-directed and offer some self-discovery/knowledge building opportunities through students' questions.
    Inquiry Learning:

    Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.   

    • Satisfactory: Students are provided with questions/problems to solve and some direction on how to arrive at solutions.
    • Good: students, assisted by the teacher clarify the question(s) to ask and the process to follow to arrive at solutions.  Sometimes referred to as Guided Inquiry
    • Very Good:  students generate the questions and assume much of the responsibility for how to solve them.  . Sometimes referred to as self-directed learning.

     

    Differentiated Instruction Satisfactory
    • kinesthetic
    • visual
    • auditory
    • No accommodations for people with learning difficulties are suggested.
    Differentiated Instruction:

    Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.

    • Satisfactory:  includes a variety of instructional approaches
    • Good: addresses  the needs of visual, auditory &  kinesthetic learners
    • Very Good: also includes strategies for learners with difficulties
    Experiential Learning Satisfactory
    • Students make crafts based on those made in South Africa.
    Experiential Learning:

    Authentic learning experiences are provided

    • Satisfactory: learning takes place through ‘hands-on’ experience or simulation
    • Good: learning involves direct experience in a ‘real world context’
    • Very good: learning involves ‘real world experiences’ taking place’ beyond the school walls.
    Cooperative Learning Satisfactory
    • Students work in groups to undertake some of the activities cooperatively.
    Cooperative Learning:

    Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.

    • Satisfactory:  students work in groups
    • Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught and practiced
    • Very Good: cooperative learning skills are explicitly taught, practiced and assessed
    Assessment & Evaluation Poor/Not considered
    Assessment & Evaluation: Tools are provided that help students and teachers to capture formative and summative information about students' learning and performance. These tools may include reflection questions, checklists, rubrics, etc.
    Peer Teaching Poor/Not considered
    Peer Teaching:

    Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.

    • Satisfactory: incidental teaching that arises from cooperative learning, presentations, etc.
    • Good or Very Good: an opportunity is intentionally created to empower students to teach other students/community members. The audience is somehow reliant on the students' teaching (students are not simply ‘presenting')
    Case Studies Poor/Not considered
    Case Studies:

    Relevant case studies are included.  Case studies are thorough descriptions of real events from real situations that students use to explore  concepts in an authentic context.

    Locus of Control Poor/Not considered
    Locus of Control: Meaningful opportunities are provided for students to choose elements of program content, the medium in which they wish to work, and/or to go deeper into a chosen issue.