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This 30 minute activity encourages pupils to consider who is responsible for ensuring we achieve the Global Goals (also known as the Sustainable Development Goals, SDGs).
It consists of four downloads:
Students adopt the role of various organizations and are arranged in circles designed to illustrate the connections between the organizations they represent and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.
The lesson provides students with the opportunity to strengthen their skills in critical thinking, evaluating options, and taking and defending a position on an issue.
The SDGs are an effective framework with which to introduce students to the challenges faced in creating a more sustainable world. Once those challenges are acknowledged it is necessary to understand the players involved and how they can meet the challenges. This lesson make a beginning in that direction with a pedagogical approach that will engage students.
The lesson has relevance for those units of study that deal with the general issue of sustainable development and serves as an introduction to the Goals and the issue of sustainability. It therefore should be used as an introduction and followed by other lessons that will explore the issues raised in greater depth.
The following tool will allow you to explore the relevant curriculum matches for this resource. To start, select a province listed below.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives
The key activity in the resource has students assume the role of various organizations who participate in an exchange with other students in which they explain how their organization can or should contribute to the realization of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). The exercise serves to reveal the competing perspectives and allows students to challenge their colleagues position.
The exercise has the further advantage of having students recognize the interdependence among those responsible for achieving the goals.
|Consideration of Alternative Perspectives:
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions
Before beginning the lesson, students must have some basic understanding of the SDGs. Such an introduction may be expected to make students aware of the economic, social, and environmental scope of the SDGs. That realization will be further strengthened in the role playing exercise in which the case for responsibility achieving the Goals is discussed and debated.
|Multiple Dimensions of Problems & Solutions:
Effectively addresses the environmental, economic and social dimensions of the issue(s) being explored.
An examination of the issue of responsibility in achieving the SDGs may be expected to help students understand that the goals are ambitious, the players numerous, and the challenges mighty.
The complexity of the problems/issues being discussed is respected.
|Acting on Learning
As students discuss the role of individuals, schools, families, consumers and governments in realizing the SDGs, it should become apparent that they are players in this venture and can make their contribution in a variety of ways.
|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
Discussion of the SDGs raise many issues related to justice, inequality, and fairness and the issue of individual responsibility for creating a more sustainable world.
Students are explicitly provided with opportunities to identify, clarify and express their own beliefs/values.
|Empathy & Respect for Humans
Student discussion of the sustainable development goals such as No Poverty, Gender Equality, Good Health and Well Being should raise their awareness of and empathy for those who struggle to realize these goals.
|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
Discussion of the natural world may arise as students consider the implications for the environment in achieving the SDGs but this is not the focus of the resource.
|Personal Affinity with Earth:
Encourages a personal affinity with -the natural world.
The trust of the resource is to have students consider how their lives and that of their school and community intersect with the achievement of the SDGs. The message is therefore that the Goals are not some abstract concept but have relevance for the individuals and their communities
Includes learning experiences that take advantage of issues/elements within the local community.
|Past, Present & Future
The lessons invite students to consider their role and that of others in realizing the preferred future represented by the SDGs.
|Past, Present & Future: Promotes an understanding of the past, a sense of the present, and a positive vision for the future.
The resource is organized around an activity in which students create a visual web of interdependence in which they suggest and defend their declarations as to how the individuals and organization in the web are related in the effort to achieve the SDGs. The lesson establishes the framework for the discussion, but it is the students who determine the direction of the discussion.
Lessons are structured so that multiple/complex answers are possible; students are not steered toward one 'right' answer.
A discussion of the SDGs draws in any number of disciplines and that discussion about the implications of the SDGs and the responsibility for their realization will reveal the interconnections among the Goals and the links in the web of responsibility for their achievement.
Learning brings together content and skills from more than one subject area
The resource asks the question, Who is responsible for attaining the SDGs? The answers and the defense of those answers is given to the students.
Learning is directed by questions, problems, or challenges that students work to address.
The lesson borrows from the classic simulation used to illustrate the web of interdependence that characterize ecosystems. In the original web, students role played the elements of an ecosystem, while in this instance the web represents various organizations and individuals that might be expected to contribute to achieving the SDGs. In each case, the exercise is intended to give visual representation to the role of the elements or organizations and the interdependent nature of their relationship.
This is an effective activity because it requires that students take and defend a position and because it makes visceral the learning intended.
Activities address a range of student learning styles, abilities and readiness.
The resource rejects the role of learners as passive recipients of information in favor of a simulation that requires them to think about and argue for a particular perspective on the issue of responsibility with respect to the SDGs.
Authentic learning experiences are provided
The responsibility web activity is carried out by students organized into groups of 4 or 5 and requires they work together if it is to succeed.
Group and cooperative learning strategies are a priority.
|Assessment & Evaluation
The interaction and exchanges among students during the web exercise will allow teachers to gain an appreciation of their understanding of the issue of responsibility with respect to the SDGs.
|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.
Students learn from their classmates who the players are in realizing the SDGs and the relative role each has.
Provides opportunities for students to actively present their knowledge and skills to peers and/or act as teachers and mentors.
Each of the organizations that students investigate and represent in the web exercise might be regarded as a case study or the beginning of one.
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
The teacher's role in this lesson is to facilitate student learning by setting a framework that encourages student exploration and exchange on the question posed by the resource - Who is Responsible.
|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.