What Does a World Savvy Classroom Look Like?

A World Savvy English Classroom at a Montessori Charter School in Fremont, California

Students in Paul Go’s English Class at Alsion Montessori High School in California were inspired by the reality TV-show Extreme Makeover Home Edition to make their own documentary about greening their school. These students undertook a research project about sustainability in an effort to make their school greener. The documentary kicks off with “Penny Pennington” announcing to the school that they’ve been chosen for Extreme Makeover School Edition. Throughout the documentary students weave in their research about issues such as efficient use of resources, recycling, composting, gardening and solar energy.  The solutions they propose include education, behavior and policy changes that will promote more effective use of resources. The entire documentary is filmed in one take, which was not only impressive but also showed their command of video production skills, an important communication skill in today’s digital age.  Click here to watch their winning documentary.

A World Savvy Government Classroom at an Alternative High School in Minneapolis, MN

Broadway Alternative Learning school serves teen mothers in Minneapolis. Government teacher, Jeff Coleman, wanted to help these young women make a connection between their own personal lives and experiences and the experiences of women around the world. With World Savvy’s support, students in Jeff’s class spent the year exploring the theme of international women's rights.  These students rarely have the chance to engage so deeply with an issues that connects so directly to their own lives and they really plunged themselves into the research. They learned about a range of topics, including: International Maternal Health, Access to Birth Control, Child Marriage, Women's Roles in the Family as Impediments to Equality in some Cultures, Political Equality, Domestic Violence, Sexual Abuse/Trafficking. For their final project, the students created a tile mural to reflect what they had learned and share it with their community at the World Savvy Festival.  Click here to see pictures of the mural.

World Savvy Science & Language Arts Classrooms at an Independent Middle School School in San Francisco

Seventh graders at Park Day School in San Francisco undertook a hands-on exploration of the interconnectedness of sustainable issues through the creation of a large scale “fiber arts” sculpture that simultaneously demonstrates the tensions between and integration of natural and synthetic materials. Students have documented their process using stop animation technique. Using scientific inquiry, these artists have identified and discerned the material qualities and differences they encounter through their sculptural process and to assess their complex connection to the concept of sustainability. Click here to see a stop-motion animation video of their process and end product.

 A World Savvy STEM Classroom at a Charter School in Saint Paul, MN

In Erin Amundson’s STEM class at Twin Cities Academy in Saint Paul, MN, students researched water quality and compared disease numbers and access to water in two countries: Switzerland and Sierra Leone. After their research, they developed solutions for decreasing the number of waterborne diseases at the local, national and global level for developing countries such as Sierra Leone.  They presented their research and solutions to judges from the Twin Cities Community at the World Savvy Challenge competition at Macalester College in March 2012. At the competition, students also participated in a collaborative discussion with peers from other schools about the pros and cons of different solutions.