Fifth graders have been working together to research topics that affect the world, their school and community before embarking on a journey to inspire change as part of their social action projects.
After brainstorming ideas in class, the students selected a topic and conducted research to gain a global perspective on the topic. Some of the topics they felt compelled to make a difference for included anxiety and stress in schools, the effects of screen time, homelessness, poverty, pollution, animal abuse, equity and inclusion.
“Students recognized that making change does not mean that you have to fix the problem, but just take a small part towards the solution,” fifth grade teacher Lauren Geremia said. “Once they learned more about the problem, they researched what kind of actions were being taken by organizations and brainstormed ways to raise awareness in our school and how they could contribute.”
Working in groups, the students created presentation slideshows and websites with the information they learned, as well as resources and ways that others can make an impact. In addition, the fifth graders visited second, third and fourth grade classrooms where they shared what they’ve learned with the younger students and encouraged them to get involved.
“This project allows students to research, collaborate and reflect over time,” Geremia said. “They independently decide what action they would like to take in order to make a positive impact. We find that this project gives the students the opportunity to not only learn about a real-world topic on a larger scale but feel empowered to be able to do something that can impact the world.”
The students will display their final “Be the Change” projects on June 16. During the presentation, they will share their work and discuss what social actions they engaged in and what steps they would take next individually or as a group.