This three-pronged approach is a brand new concept never provided to teachers by a charity before. It is a teaching resource which allows pupils to learn about the importance of water to the lives of people in the developing world and identify factors that lead to inequalities in how people access water.
Pupils are encouraged to think critically about what can be done by individuals, communities, organisations and governments to overcome water problems, with the goal of inspiring them to take action themselves.
To this end, they can choose to take part in Oxfam Water Walk to raise money to build wells and transform schools in Mali. Children in Mail are missing school because they have to walk up to 6km every day to get water and by walking the same distance, pupils will be able to empathise with their peers in another part of the world.
Water Week also incorporates a ‘Message in a Bottle’ campaign to create a platform for pupils to communicate what they have learnt about the world’s water resources and to write and present their message to local and central UK government.
Richard Paul King, a former teacher now working for Oxfam, explains: “This is both an innovative and educational global resource which combines learning, campaigning and fundraising all in one campaign. It does so much more than just tick the right boxes for teachers.
“It incorporates activities for all key stages and has been designed to be flexible so it can suit all sizes and types of schools. Activities can be implemented within just one subject, like geography, citizenship or science, or across a whole raft of other subjects such as religious knowledge, art or drama.”
The launch of Oxfam Water Week on 11 July is timely, as new research from Think Global reveals that both parents and children want schools to teach more about global issues and make topics such as international poverty part of the national curriculum.
Primary and secondary schools across the UK, from Lands End to John O’Groats, have signed up to Oxfam Water Week 2011 which takes place from 11 - 17 July in England and Wales (13 - 19 June in Scotland).
Richard concludes: “We are providing schools with educational resources to help them make a real difference to the lives of children in Mali - through learning the real meaning of ‘water vulnerability’
For further media information please contact:
Louise Esplin, EsplinPR, T:01235 850115 M:07775 678237 E:firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTES TO EDITORS:
• New research from Think Global highlights YouGov findings that the overwhelming majority of parents of school-age children want schools to teach about global issues such as environmental sustainability (84% of parents) and international poverty (73%). Three-quarters want schools to help young people to think globally (71%) and be responsible global citizens (72%). 92% of young people think it is important to learn where the things they use, like food, energy and water come from.
Combined with existing research about the demand for, and impact of, teaching about global issues, this new research presents compelling arguments to ensure our schools prepare young people to live, work and contribute in a globalised world.
• In Mali, only 25 per cent of men and 12 per cent of women can read and write. Decaying school buildings, untrained teachers and a lack of clean water make matters worse. Girls are unable to go to school as they have domestic duties, including collecting water from unhygienic sources many miles from home. This contaminated water makes children sick, reducing school attendance further.
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