Tag Archives: Global Citizenship

We Did Good

From my experience, most eleven year olds have a deep vein of empathy and the ability to imagine another person’s story. The flooding in Pakistan has moved all of us. But, as with our search for a peaceful world, we feel weak in the face of such an insurmountable catastrophe.

The good news is this: just because you can’t do a big thing, doesn’t mean you can’t do a little thing.

helpSo, how to do good?


We took some time to learn about Pakistan as few students had any background knowledge. We saw a beautiful video of the mountains and valleys of the country and realized how much like British Columbia it is.

We used atlases, books, websites, newspaper articles, and talked to our parents to learn more, and then we shared our learning. We discovered that most of our parents knew very little about Pakistan, but were as curious as we were.

We saw coverage of the flood. With 10 000 schools and 200 hospitals damaged or destroyed, and with the loss of the next few growing seasons we know that people are and will be suffering. We realized people’s basic needs for clean water, food, shelter, and medical care are not being met.


We used Wallwisher, an online note board to gather all of our ideas. This helped us narrow down our choices.


AsimWe Skyped with Asim Fayaz, a 22 year old entrepreneur and recent university graduate in Lahore, Pakistan. He gave us an account of how the floods have affected people throughout the country. Although our Skype connection was very shaky, he helped us to understand how serious and far reaching the flood’s effects have been. Asim seemed glad that we were paying attention to what was happening in his country and that we were willing to help.


We decided on a family movie night at our school as a way to have fun, share a bit of our learning, and to raise money toward a family survival pack, through DisasterAid Canada. This seems to be “something appropriate”, and something good we can DO. And because the Government of Canada is matching funds, we can effectively double our donation.

We were generously supported by local businesses, Quality Foods, Java Junction, and Aegis Realty, as well as the Parent Advisory Council. Energetic parents Tracy, Kim, and Rebecca did the heavy lifting and made the popcorn.

Everyone worked very hard to make the event a success. Popcorn bags were filled, cookies were baked, and juice and coffee were served.  Over 120 parents and children attended with blankets and pillows and lawn chairs. Everyone seemed to have a good time (despite some audio problems). I was very proud of the heart-felt presentation made by students before the movie began.

I had told the students going in that we might raise $200.00. They were thrilled to announce at the end of the night that we had raised $989.80! A donation of a few dollars extra put us over the top–$1000.00! We are grateful to our school community for their generosity; we know the money will be put to good use. Greyson wrote about the evening here.

All of this reminds me of a commercial about volunteerism and kindness from when I was growing up–do any adults remember it?

Do some good for the people
Who need your help.
Be a buddy
To a neighbour.
Make a sad face smile

Do good,
Do good,
It’s Brotherhood.
It feels so good to say, “I did good.”

Water Wise Public Service Announcements

We’re done! We learned about water conservation from several websites and read an editorial containing water use statistics. Then we watched PSAs to see the strategies used by to persuade people to change the way they think and behave on topics from littering to water use. Here is one example of our work.

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The video is very pixelated, which is a bit disappointing; however, we are going to keep working on a solution. We will to try to upload our videos on individual class blogs–it will take time, but we will persevere!

Blog Action Day: Poverty

Today bloggers around the world are thinking about and writing about poverty.

The first video above by the band Radiohead is a powerful reminder that people’s lives are affected by many things they can’t control, including the circumstances they are born into.

For blog action day, choose one of these activities:

  • write your response to one of these videos: what did it make you feel and think, and what do you think we should do as a class or individuals?
  • think about the title “All I Need”. What does a person need to have a “good” life? Do some people have too much of some things, and not enough of others?
  • the video The Girl Effect focuses on one aspect of poverty.  What are the consequences of the Girl Effect for boys? For communities?
  • you may have heard the phrase “Think globally, act locally”. What local actions can we do together to make a difference when it comes to poverty?
  • think about our Water Wise public service announcements. What is the link between poverty and access to clean water?

Post your responses on your own blogs. I look forward to reading your thoughts and ideas. There are other links on Miss Wyatt’s site. I know other student bloggers will be writing about poverty. Take time to read and respond to their ideas, too.