Part of the Global Schools Program is to recognize and celebrate the achievements of our advocates. Each month we feature advocates and spotelight their endless contributions to Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). Below are the featured 10 February Advocates of the month.
Berna Aslan is a Primary Years Program (PYP) English teacher at ENKA Schools who is passionate about empowering students to use their voices in order to make a positive difference for the planet. She has carried out numerous activities to introduce all the SDGs in her classes, which has been an eye-opening learning journey. In one of their latest units “Sharing the Planet”, her students chose to raise awareness on Plastic Pollution and Climate Change, focusing on their causes and impacts through creating informative posters and persuasive emails which they wrote to various audiences of their choice (including the School Admin, parents, teachers, relatives, classmates, world-wide known climate activists, NGOs, government officials, etc.) Furthermore, her students have been creating their own websites based on the SDGs that they want to take action on with the help of their ICT teacher. This is a way of documenting their own activism journey to become change-makers. Aslan’s students also started monitoring grade level food consumption in a unit to collect data and use it while setting S.M.A.R.T. goals to commit to zero waste or low impact lifestyle options for sustainability. Her students set up continuous personal goals in order to have a positive impact on the Climate Crisis. Following the UN’s Climate Action, Superhero missions have been a gamified and an informative journey for many of her students to change their habits. While inquiring into the “Where we are in Place and Time” unit, her students learned about stereotypes and how inspiring figures overcome these challenges. Also, Advocate Berna Aslan runs the “Kindness Hunters: Secret Agents” club. Her students brainstormed ways to stand up against bullying and maintain a more peaceful and inclusive environment. The “Kindness Hunters” students filmed a Kindness Boomerang video that was shared with the whole school community to raise awareness on bullying. Her students also came up with a Kindness Pledge to teach Primary School students to promote the well-being of every individual. The advocacy program has been an insightful process for both Berna and her students. She looks forward to taking further action, continuing to share her experiences and creating a positive impact with her colleagues and other Advocates to implement SDGs in and outside the school.
CATHERINE ANYANGO KORWA.
Catherine Korwa is a Global Schools Advocate who has appreciated the new Competencies Based Curriculum introduced in Kenyan schools starting from early years and elementary classes in 2017 which connected nicely with the SDGs. Ms. Korwa states that the group of learners were the future generation that would live practicing the SDGs in their school day-to-day activities and in their home environment. However, Catherine notes that the Global Schools Program needs to go to the ground and incorporated registered women groups in Kenya and get chairpersons to volunteer spreading the word on the SDGs to the community at large because the issues of climate change, gender equity, zero hunger, and poverty eradication are not only universal issues but also a matter of urgency amongst the 17 Global Goals.
EDWIN A. QUIÑOSA JR.
Despite the limitations brought by Online Distance Learning, Global Schools Advocate Edwin Quniñosa managed to implement SDG related activities when teaching Asian and World History to Grades 7 and 8 students. These activities ranged from news reporting and reflections to designing interactive and meaningful campaign materials on Child rights, democracy, peace, and social justice. Quiñosa was able to facilitate his students taking a stand on issues that matter to them and tackle the challenges experienced by their fellow citizens with innovation, creativity, determination, and new ideas that contribute towards a better future and sustainable development.
IDOWU, ABIODUN MATHIAS.
Idowu Abiodun Mathias is a Global Schools Advocate and teacher at Lagos Baptist Senior College, Orile Agege, Lagos, Nigeria. Abiodun has been working with other teachers on SDGs and ESD in and beyond his school community, leading sustainability efforts and activities since September 2021 and reaching out to students from grades 10 to 12. In his classes, students have created their own presentations to increase awareness of the SDGs and devised solutions to the most pressing problems in their different communities. Some of Idowu’s projects with his students include creating a more sustainable and cleaner environment and valuing toilets activities. He has also organized and conducted various events such as: World Toilet Day to inspire students and adults around his school communities to tackle issues regarding the global sanitation crisis. and To achieve SDG 6 they ran a door-to-door awareness campaign to educate parents around his school communities on the need for proper sanitation and training them to ensure clean hygienic toilets. Advocate Abiodun and his colleagues have successfully organized health talk shows for students and adults in their community during World Diabetes Day, to raise awareness about diabetes as a global public health issue. The talk show was focused on what needs to be done collectively and individually for better prevention, diagnosis and management of the condition to achieve good health and well-being. The theme for the commemoration was “Access to Diabetes Care.” A dietitian was also invited to educate his students on the topics related to diabetes.To promote SDG 9: and SDG 16. Obiodun ensured his students actively took part in a STEM challenge organized by the State Ministry of Education, tagged "Schools' Eggs Drop Challenge". This enabled him to create the desire in his students to explore , experiment, and develop problem- solving skills. This month, Abiodun’s students have successfully completed studying the wetlands focusing on their importance and effects on human life. The students connected this activity with. This was done using class time to celebrate and protect the incredible biodiversity of these beautiful and vital Nigerian habitats. Over 520 students benefited directly from Abiodun’s ESD classroom lessons and activities.
MANI RAM GIMIRE.
Mani Ram Gimire is a Global Schools Advocate who has found it very interesting to work with SDGs and integrate the factual data of ESD in the instruction manual. He finds it very possible to inculcate innovation related to indigenous or contemporary dependent variables. He believes that ESD can measure logical mathematics in paddy plantations and make Yamari (a local bread). This has helped teach his learners to harvest rainwater and use manual water filters as well as solar disinfection. Mani believes that ESD provides essential life development skills such as preserving vegetation around them. He indicated that education doesn’t give uncertainty and anxiety to the learners in present changing globalizations.
Global Schools Advocate Mubeen Safura has strengthened the implementation of the International Baccalaureate curriculum offered at the school following the declaration by the school president to address the SDGs through ESD this year. The SDGs were mapped onto the whole school curriculum which provided opportunities for Advocate Safura’s students to inquire into the real world issues. The students were able to deepen their conceptual understandings as they navigated sustainable development issues to propose possible solutions. The sample lessons, workshops and resource materials provided the other teachers with significant and relevant ideas to engage students authentically. All the events of the school incorporated the relevant SDGs to help students understand the “WHY” of learning. To name a few out of the many school events that were conducted: The Model United Nations Conference, international debates, art exhibitions, language clubs, Design Thinking activities and Service as Action projects to support community work. Mubeen noted that it was interesting to observe and document the incredible levels of student conceptual understanding relating to all the subjects.
NOAH MODEST NGALUKA.
Mr. Ngaluka is a volunteer teacher in schools with a smaller number of teachers in different rural areas of Serengeti, Mara, Tanzania. As a Global Schools Advocate, Noah has shown full commitment to impart SDGs among pupils, fellow teachers and the community at large, ensuring quality education for all, a gender balanced society, and environmental conservation which are the pillars of daily life around the globe.
Ryan Porter is a Global Schools Advocate who has used his term to introduce his 4th graders at ENKA (School in Instanbul) to very important topics on Gender Equality, Climate Change, Inequalities, Poverty, Zero Hunger, and other SDGs. It has been Ryan’s goal as well as the goal of other 4th grade teachers at his school to create awareness about SDGs through indulging in activities with the Gender Equality Group (GEG) at the school. Furthermore, ENKA school engaged with a former student and his dad in an online tour centered around their sustainable living practices, and the students created posters to persuade communities to take action on issues in relation to climate change. Ryan shared a video with his students from South Africa which gave detailed information about himself and his family, how they lived during the water shortage crisis and the times that electricity was cut off. Global Schools Advocate Ryan Porter has seen an inspiring reaction from his students as they take on these massive challenges and become world changers.
STELLA GYIMAAH LARBI.
Stella Gyimaah Larbi is a Global Schools Advocates who is passionate about seeing the attainment of SDGs. Her focus has been on Goal 5: Gender Equality, Goal 6: Clean Water and Sanitation, Goal 8: Decent Work and Economic Growth and lastly, Goal 10: Reduced Inequalities. With these 4 SDGs, Gyimaah Larbi has trained teachers and young girls on practical skills to bring a great change in their lives and their communities. Her classroom lessons have always incorporated the SDGs.
Throughout her advocate mandate, Stefania Binucci has been able to raise awareness about SDGs by talking to her students, school principal, and teachers within her department and community members. She finds her journey of advocacy very exciting, where she has been able to meet and share good practices with colleagues from all over the world as well as attend informative workshops and webinars.