'A footprint means pressing down and global means world, so 'global footprint' means pressing down on the world and we don't want to press too hard' (child's definition of a Global Footprint)
what is Global Learning? CoreKnowledge Key Skills Values and Attitudes what is sustainability? what about climate change?
what about climate change?

Climate Change
Teacher Idea: lesson plans, schemes of work and projects

Starting points: Weather of the World
Firstly ask learners to consider our typical weather in spring, summer, autumn and winter (as described in the quick activities).  Research other season patterns from around the world, for instance tropical countries tend to have two seasons, what are they?  What does 5 seasons entail?  Ask learners to work in teams to present their findings to the class or to younger learners.

The three Rs – Reduce, Reuse, Recycle
Begin by showing the learners Junjie’s film from China in the ‘What Makes me Happy?’ series, available at:

After watching the film, use Circle Time or a similar class discussion method to talk about the film.  Use the following questions to prompt contributions:

  • What made Junjie happy?
  • What did he collect to make his junk-model boat? 
  • Who helped him collect these things?
  • How did the film end?

Explain to the pupils that what we often think of as simply ‘re-cycling’ is actually made up of three elements, or the 3 Rs – re-use, reduce and recycle.  Explain these terms using the following as a guide:

Re-use: before you throw items away, think how they can be reused.

Reduce: the amount of waste you produce by being more careful when using resources

Re-cycle: If the first two Rs fail, then recycle items responsibly in the proper recycling banks. Ask learners to decide: of the three Rs, which was Junjie engaged in?

Million Bottle Wonder

Show the children this picture as an example of Re-use of glass bottles. 

Wat Lan Khuad, Thailand (photograph from The Guardian Eyewitness page published 21.10.08).  A Buddhist monk stands at the window of Wat Pa Maha Chedi Kaew, the temple better known as Wat Lan Khuad in Si Sa Ket province, which is built from a million glass bottles. 

Wat Lan Khuad, Thailand 17 October 2008
Image taken from The Guardian - In pictures: Eyewitness website


(Tip: Copy and paste on to a PowerPoint slide and enlarge to fit). 

Ask learners to write their own newspaper article to accompany this picture.  Include a snappy title and a caption for the photo.  Use the articles to make a news item of different perspectives on one photograph or a class display of the newspaper articles. 

·         Global Footprints
Explain the thinking behind the idea of ‘carbon footprint’ to the learners.  You could use a pre-prepared power-point presentation or make your own (see http://www.globalfootprints.org/page/id/0/8/  for ideas).  WWF provide a quick and simple questionnaire to calculate footprints (see resources links)

In small groups ask learners to consider the term ‘global footprint’. In their group ask them to compose a sentence summing up their views.  This is one sentence from a child in a Tower Hamlets school:

'A footprint means pressing down and global means world, so 'global footprint' means pressing down on the world and we don't want to press too hard'

(child's definition of a Global Footprint from http://www.globalfootprints.org/home )

·         Flip Flotsam
Deliver a scheme of work about recycling by beginning with this beautiful film about Kenya and recycling.  Show the film and ask learners to respond creatively by writing a poem, painting a picture or expressing themselves in another art form.