Life Skills-a British Council project: Activity 2- A Social Contract.

DSCN0258

As I have already mentioned in my  first post about this amazing British Council project we have been working on with my 5th graders, for some time now…..

mos14lifeskillsbody

We draw a human body on the whiteboard.

 

” about a month ago, I found out that I had to teach in ….Greek ,during the so called “Flexible  Zone”  of the greek primary schools, which has to do with  projects oriented learning , for about 2 hours every week.  I had to think hard before I made up my mind and finally decided to work on a British Council project, called “Life Skills”, which sounded both  promising and challenging! I also  decided ,to do part of the project, in english! ”

mos14lifeskillsgames4

The right of education for all!

 

mos14lifeskillsgames3

The right to religion! Haha

Br

mos14lifeskillsgames2

Playing games to practice the rights vocabulary

 

Life Skills are not something new; they are a set of basic skills
that enable us to effectively manage the challenges and questions
we face in our daily lives. They include confidence, assertiveness,
decision-making, and the ability to stay safe
and healthy.

mos14lifeskillsnewfinal

Schools are uniquely placed to play a key role in promoting
and sustaining young people’s emotional and social health,
as part of their role in providing a rounded quality education which helps pupils to gain the confidence they need to develop into successful adults.

mos14lifeskillsnewfinal2

The following second activity, is a copy from the British Council   manual for trainers and teachers with recommended activities !

My students are getting more and more excited every day and ask me to keep working on this project for as long as possible! They seem to be highly enganged and happy working on it! I feel blessed that I was given the chance to work on something so creative with them, this year!…

DSCN0251

 

In this second stage, students will create a Social Contract.
Students:
• will discover their rights and obligations through their
own need to live a happy life
• will feel personally responsible for upholding human rights and become committed to safeguarding and claiming them

DSCN0259

A piece of cardboard cut into the shape of a tree

1. A piece of cardboard cut into the shape of a tree
2. Coloured paper cut into the shape of leaves
or fruit and tree roots

mos15happystudents

My students are getting more and more excited every day

• We draw a human body on the whiteboard.
• We ask the students to tell us the characteristics
and traits a person should have in order to feel fulfilled
and happy. We write down the words or draw them on or next
to the human body (e.g. education near the head, emotions
near the heart, food and water near the mouth).

DSCN0231
• We discuss with the students which characteristics
and traits we need to survive, which to develop
as personalities and which to make our lives better.

bloglifes4

Freedom of speech

 

bloglifes5

 

bloglifes9
• We draw a tree on a piece of cardboard and stick it on
the wall. We give students pieces of paper shaped like leaves
or fruit and ask them to write on them the human rights related
to the human characteristics and traits we have drawn.
When they have written them all down, we check to see
whether there is any right we may have missed.

bloglifes11
• We then explain to them that in order to safeguard
our rights, we all need to fulfil certain obligations as individuals.
We give students pieces of paper shaped like roots and ask them to write on them the obligations that each one of us should have.

bloglifes13

Learning the relevant vocabulary in english with the help of posters.

 

 

bloglifes14

Using anagrams to guess the english words.

 

bloglifes15

Deep thinkers!…

 

bloglifes16

A bunch of highly motivated students!

 

bloglifes17

 

bloglifeskills

The characteristics and traits a person should have in order to feel fulfilled and happy

 

bloglifeskills2

Students feel personally responsible for upholding human rights

 

bloglifeskills3

The human rights related to the human characteristics and traits we have drawn

• When our tree is ready, we ask the group whether
it is satisfied and agrees with the result. If the answer is Yes,
we ask each student to place their signature on the tree,
and show in this way that they are committed to respect
human rights, claim them and to undertake their responsibilities.

Actually, I decide to add a few activities to the original ones!

Fisrt, we played a guessing game using drawing and miming with the rights vocabulary both in english and in greek! It proved to be loads of fun!

Later, I taught them all the rights and responsibilities vocabualry in english and played a teams guessing game with them using anagrams!

Finally, we decided to make a collage using our rights vocabulary and simple drawings!

 

DSCN0252

Placing our leaves on the tree!

 

mos15lifeskills

We give students pieces of paper shaped like roots and ask them to write on them the obligations that each one of us should have.

 

mos15lifeskills2

The tree roots

 

 

mos15lifeskills3

mos15lifeskills4

We ask each student to place their signature on the tree

mos15lifeskills6

They are commited undertake their responsibilities

 

DSCN0297

Our responsibilities are the roots of our rights tree!

 

DSCN0299

They are committed to respect human rights

 

DSCN0300

Coloured paper cut into the shape of leaves

 

DSCN0302

mos15lifeskillsactivity2final

Working on our Rights collage.

 

mos15lifeskillsact2finalposter

A beautiful collage!

 

DSCN0348

DSCN0349

DSCN0350

DSCN0351

The benefits of team work in the classroom

bloghFUN

My classroom and any classroom, dosen’t have to be a solo learning adventure…..it can also be a collaborative learning environment!

I always include many teamwork exercises in my weekly curriculum, to mix my lesson plan up a bit!
These group activities can be beneficial on a personal, group and class-wide level.
Our  PROJECTS depend a lot on teamwork, too! Teamwork,
 has been neglected in greek schools, where individualism prevails!
These are what I think, teamwork benefits are:
On Social Skills
When students form a group, social skills kick into action. A team of students must actively listen to each other, articulate ideas and use genuinely constructive criticism to be effective. Kids must learn to work together and cooperate. This is an opportunity to make friends and talk with others — networking can start in the classroom. This is a chance for the kids to expand their vocabulary, work on patience and learn how to take turns. Conflict resolution may also become part of the learning equation.
mos14life skillsnew

On a Personal Level

Each student can benefit on a personal level from teamwork. She can feel like a valued part of the group as she contributes to the project and shares her ideas, which can build confidence and self-esteem. The student will be exposed to new ideas and ways of thinking, which can expand her personal view on the subject. Teamwork activities can be the time for each student to shine and show others her skills and talents.

Learning Together

As you watch the teams work toward their goal, the educational benefits of teamwork becomes clear. As the team works, they can all offer ideas and come to conclusions together. Students not only learn by working through the team project, they also learn by explaining their thought processes and reasoning to others. Teamwork also helps foster problem-solving skills, reasoning skills and group brainstorming. The students will learn to use critical thinking and evaluation skills as a group. An effective team will evenly distribute the responsibilities, blast through the material and cover more ground than if they did the homework or project individually.

mos14lifeskillsnewclass

The Class Environment

Days can get long and dull when you have a group of kids that are disconnected and staring at the walls. Group work is a welcomed change in the normal routine and gets the kids out of their seats. Schoolwork becomes more enjoyable and rewarding when you incorporate teamwork exercises. Just make sure that you define some teamwork boundaries before you let the kids loose. The kids need to know what they should be achieving, how to tell when they have accomplished their task and how long they have for this activity, otherwise you’ll just have clusters of talking students not staying on task.

Last but not least: I always have a teams seating  arrangement in the classroom.Students ,sit and work in groups !

mos14lifeskills5