World’s largest Lesson: Model UN
On Thursday 22 September 47 pupils from Cirencester Deer Park School, Cirencester Kingshill School and Sir William Romney’s School joined together to hold a Model United Nations conference on the Sustainable Development Goals and to develop ideas on how the newest country in the world, South Sudan, could celebrate future birthdays and achieve the challenging goals set by 2030.
The Model UN was also part of the World’s Largest Lesson, a global idea that in the week beginning Monday 19 September, all schools should work with their pupils in raising awareness about the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) which have been written to improve the quality of life for all people across the entire world. The World’s Largest Lesson promoted three main objectives for getting involved: to care, to collaborate and to be creative.
Supported by a team of 5 Trainee Geography Teachers from the Gloucestershire Initial Teacher Education Partnership (GITEP), the Year 9 pupils carried out research into the SDGs and they developed detailed resolutions on how SDG 1 No Poverty and SDG 2 Zero Hunger could be achieved in South Sudan. Additionally the delegations could choose another SDG of their choice, one that they felt was most significant to helping the people of south Sudan.
Working in teams representing Brazil, Germany, India, Kenya and the USA, the pupils worked in delegations of nine and ten and worked their way through a range of activities, before using their new knowledge to help develop solutions to support South Sudan.
After putting together resolutions and an excellent session of lobbying, the pupils made way to Cirencester Council Chambers, where they presented their resolutions with the aid of the microphones!
"I really enjoyed the event and it really expanded my knowledge." Chloe
"It was good to work with other pupils from other schools rather than in school teams. It was different and it made it more competitive." James
"The Model UN was a challenging, fun experience. We had to use initiative and team work skills." Luke
"It was an exciting event and to work with other students to gain more understanding about South Sudan, was great." Poppy
The three main objectives of caring, creating and collaborating were seen in abundance throughout the day. We have coordinated an annual Model UN for a number of years now and to have three local schools involved this year was brilliant. The materials and learning opportunities created by the Geography Trainee Teachers from GITEP really got the pupils working together and made them think hard about the importance of information in backing up an argument!
The quality of debate during the afternoon really identified the pupils understanding of the issues and their application of knowledge from work covered in Geography was great to see. I am sure the day has inspired some of our pupils to find out more about the international Model United Nations Alfrink (MUNA) held at Alfrink College, Holland in February 2017.
Rebecca Lillington, Head of Humanities Faculty