For two weeks each year, at the end of February and start of March, thousands of schools, colleges and universities across the UK come together to learn from the people who grow our food and drinks, mine our gold and who grow the cotton in our clothes – people who are often exploited and underpaid with the event Fairtrade Fortnight organised by the Fairtrade foundation.
Last Fairtrade Fortnight, schools explored the topic of ‘Climate, Fairtrade and You‘, learning how farmers around the world are affected by climate change. Students shared their own visions of the world that they want for farmers and workers worldwide and the planet that we all share. These inspiring works were displayed at the 2021 Fairtrade Youth Exhibition.
For this Fairtrade Fortnight (21st February to 6th March), the aim is to invite your school to stand with farmers and workers seeking climate justice, The Fairtrade Organisation is looking to highlight the growing challenges that climate change brings to farmers and workers. The Fairtrade Organisation have lots of support and guidance:
If you’re new to the topic of Fairtrade and the climate, check out ‘Climate, Fairtrade and You' topic packs. They are full of assemblies, lesson plans and activities to help your students learn about climate change and its impacts on farmers around the world.
If you want to take your learning a step further, check out the new film and lesson series ‘A Fair Future’. Through this series, your students will learn why trade justice is necessary for climate justice, and how we can all take action for a fairer future.
It’s never too early to start learning about Fairtrade! EYFS can join in the fun with a new Comic and Activity Pack, co-produced with EarthCubs. Join Gigi the Giraffe in Kenya to find out where coffee comes from!
Come along to the Choose The World You Want Festival 2022 From online panels to chocolate tastings and teacher training sessions, the Choose The World You Want Festival 2022 will take place online from 21 February to 6 March.
Young people up to the age of 25 are invited to send a message to the individuals, businesses, MPs and wider community visiting the 2022 Fairtrade Youth Exhibition: a message to inspire climate action and remind exhibition visitors that we must listen to the farmers most affected by climate change. Last year, the 2021 Fairtrade Youth Exhibition saw 13,000 visitors. This year, that number is set to grow. Click here to get involved.
Read on to find out about how LGfL's teaching and learning resources can help your students explore fairtrade and climate change over the Fairtrade fortnight event and use the theme to support writing for a purpose.
First, let's look at a clip from LGfL TV exploring why using themes like climate change are important: Writing for a purpose provides the students with an audience and therefore a real purpose to write. Knowing their work would be shared outside of a book or class, that their work will be read and seen by different people adds a real incentive to create a high standard of work, so go start your campaign but it’s a great one to start.
Lee Parkinson @ICT_MrP in his keynote speech at our LGfL conference in 2018 (yes it was that long ago!) shared how powerful it was to explore the idea of using themes such as climate or environmental issues to foster engagement and create and inspire students to start campaigning and how it can be used to increase the scale of aspiration, audience and outcomes for all learners.
In this section of his keynote above, (watch here for the full-length video) Mr P speaks of the 3 key points to encourage writing:
Use an exciting stimulus
Don’t leave writing useless on a page
Let them write for the world
Mr P also mentions Ron Berger’s Hierarchy of Audience, the idea that introducing an authentic audience changes the perception of the work for the student and this affects the amount of effort they put into the final outcome.
The Busy Things platform offers writing activities via their fantastic range of digital templates, all of which will support your students exploring this event. First, ask your students to demonstrate their knowledge of Global warming with this temple, Explore climate change by creating your own deforestation scene and write about it by using the text and picture tools with this template here. Or use the picture and text tools to write about the future of our rainforests with this template or how about writing a piece about how climate change affects the weather? There is also a range of interactive maps to look at food origins.
Busy Things have also worked with The Climate Coalition to develop a new collection of games and activities to make learning about climate change interactive and memorable for primary school children.
World climate zones - An interactive labelling activity to help children understand the hot and cold regions of the world - how might climate change affect them?
Global habitats - What animals live where? Use this activity to help understand the characteristics of different habitats and how they might be affected by climate change.
Polar regions - Ready-made templates for children to write about the polar ice caps and the effect of global warming. Create Arctic/Antarctic fact files, create an Arctic/Antarctic scene plus interactive activities for labelling an Arctic habitat and sorting animals that live in the polar regions.
The Rainforest - Explore the rainforests of the world using our interactive labelling activity, and us our ready-made templates to write about and illustrate their understanding of the rainforest climate and habitat, it's deforestation and the rainforests of the future.
Tree World! - a brand NEW game, this game simulates a planet inhabited by Beeples, flora and fauna - can they live together in harmony? Children can experiment to see what happens when the carbon balance goes wrong! We challenge them to try to avoid a climate disaster and save the planet!
Poster making activities and a game suitable for children aged 5 to 7, Using these activities, young children can create a variety of posters campaigning against the pollution of our planet. Each poster activity comes with guidance that the teacher can use to explain to the children some key concepts to think about when doing their work. Each template has a full-colour version and also a line art version. If the activity is assigned to your class, teachers can choose which template they prefer.
Also within Busy Publisher why not get your students to use the postcard/letter template, you could get your students to design, make and send postcards/letters to local shops which might not stock many Fairtrade products encouraging them to do so, or perhaps send a postcard to a local MP about a local climate issue or students could use a newspaper template to create their own newspapers headlines or campaign leaflets to hand out to raise awareness of the topic.
Just type in the keyword Climate Change with the search function to see all of the resources available to you in the Busy Things platform.
Students could also use the award-winning range of digital tools found within the just 2easy tool suite, why not ask your students to write persuasive letters or design posters explaining why using fairtrade products make a real difference, or exploring a local climate issue such as air pollution.
You can also get your students to create their own animations focusing on climate change using the jit5 animate app, using their own drawing or using clipart, remember you use the microphone to add audio to your animations)
Growing up around the world aims to help children in the UK understand the realities of childhood in different contexts and follows the lives of 11 children in 10 different countries for more than 20 years in the wake of the Rio Earth Summit. The films in this resource provide a unique insight into growing up around the world; the challenges, hopes and dreams of these children.
They also show how the world around them has changed and the impact that this has had, it also has a fantastic page which offers tips on how children can take action and some suggestions to get children started, here are just a few examples:
Write a blog
Organise an event
Write to decision-makers and influential people
Organise a debate – invite people (parents, community, etc.) to be an audience. Choose an issue you are passionate about and research it. Prepare arguments for and against. Keep in mind that the issue you are debating could be controversial or personal for some people so be sensitive to other people’s opinions and feelings.
Make a film
Make a calendar – highlighting issues each month raises awareness and you could also sell your calendar to raise funds
Hand out leaflets
Make a comic book
Create a magazine or newspaper on the issue
Designed for use in Citizenship, PSHE or Geography lessons, the videos introduce Key Stage 2, 3and 4 pupils to human rights, building an understanding of the issues facing people around the world. The resources come with a comprehensive teacher pack with full lesson plans, starter activities, sample worksheets, a dictionary of key terms and tips for expanding on the material provided in the resource.
For even more support with climate change or ecology activities, Adobe offers the Save the Ocean: Creative Climate Change Activity Project these downloadable educational resources supply educators with everything they need to write their own poetry assignments, lesson plans, and exercise the included files from Adobe’s free resources.
Adobe in partnership with Sky Media has also launched The Edit, An outstanding, student-led project that actively engages young people in real-world topics and gives them skills for the future, with tech support and CPD for teachers to boost your tech confidence in the classroom.
Register now for this fantastic digital storytelling challenge, perfect for media and English studies, and a great way to improve the wellbeing of your learners – with a ‘direct to student’ offering and streamlined resources to better support educators teaching The Edit remotely.
The challenge? Students who are aged 8 – 18 are tasked to create a 90-second video news report on one of two important topics, Equality, Diversity & Inclusion or Climate Change. Discover more about running The Edit in your school with this video.
Whatever you have planned for Fairtrade fortnight please do remember to share your students work via our Twitter or Facebook pages and use the event’s hashtag #fairtradefortnight and we will help share your student’s work with a greater audience.