solutionary congress

Students Compete to Create a Better World in First Solutionaries Congress

by Marsha Rakestraw Many schools have debate teams that choose an either/or side regarding a current event and then gather evidence and argue against other teams to support their chosen side. But what if instead of just discussing important issues, students were challenged to develop realistic, meaningful solutions to our pressing global problems? Students did…

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Reclaiming Billboards

We Have You Surrounded: Exploring Branding, Marketing & Globalization

We’re surrounded by marketing and advertising telling us what to buy, whom to be, what we need to be happy. Use this series of activities to help students explore issues of branding, marketing, and globalization. Recommended for grades 9 through 12. Time: Several weeks   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core…

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Resources: Earth Court

Earth Court

The biggest issues and challenges of our time go on trial as students serve as prosecution, defense and jury, and then develop a solutions-based sentencing. Recommended for grades 9 and up. Time: Varies   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core for grades 9-12.   Find out how some of our other…

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Resources: What is a humane life?

What is a Humane Life?

What’s a typical Saturday look like in the life of someone striving to live a more humane life? Participants follow a “humane presenter” or a “humane wannabe” through a reenactment of their day to learn about the whats and whys of making humane choices every day. Recommended for grades 5 and up. Time: 90-120 minutes…

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What Makes a Humane Being?

What Makes a Humane Being?

What are the most desirable and undesirable qualities of humans? Use sample stories and pictures to help students identify our best (and worst) qualities and how we can encourage humane qualities in ourselves and others. Recommended for grades 3 through 6. Time: 30-60 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core…

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woman looking in mirror and brushing hair

What Price Beauty?

This activity encourages students to explore and think critically about the impacts of the ingredients in the personal care products that they use on themselves, other people, animals and the environment, as well as how branding and marketing play into our choices. Recommended for grades 8 and up. Time: A few days to several weeks…

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Resources: Where in the World?

Where in the World?

Students “shop” for T-shirts to help them make the connection between what they wear and the conditions under which it’s made. Recommended for grades 9 and up. Time: At least two days   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core for grades 9-12.   Find out how some of our other activities…

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Resources: What Will you Say?

What Will You Say?

At the end of your very long life, a child asks you what you did to help make the world so much better. Guide students through this visualization to help them get in touch with their power to make positive change. Recommended for grades 5 and up. Time: 10-20 minutes   Common Core Standards for…

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Resources: Which harms less?

Which Harms Less?

Great for a larger assembly, this activity asks students to compare pairs of similar products to consider which of the two helps more and harms less. Recommended for grades 5 and up. Time: 15-30 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf): Download Common Core for grades 5-8. Download Common Core for grades 9-12….

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Resources: What does Humane World look like?

What Does a Humane World Look Like?

Have students create their vision of a humane world and compare it to the world we live in now. What are the differences, and how can we make the world “as it is” become the humane world envisioned? Recommended for grades 2 through 6. Time: 15-30 minutes   Common Core Standards for this activity (pdf):…

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