Global Dignity Day Canada - A Call for Participation !
On Wednesday, October 15th, 2014, schools and organizations from around the world will once again celebrate Global (GD).
I am a teacher and I am privileged to be on the Canadian organizing committee once again!
There are wonderful resources and Facilitator Guides on the Canadian Global Dignity site to help you with activities for your classroom or school!
“…every human being has the universal right to lead a dignified life.”
What is Global Dignity?
Global Dignity (GD) (www.globaldignity.org) is an independent, international, non-political and non-partisan organization focused on empowering individuals with the concept that every human being has the universal right to lead a dignified life. Established in 2005, by HRH Crown Prince Haakon of Norway, Operation HOPE Founder, Chairman and CEO John Hope Bryant and Professor Pekka Himanen, GD is linked to the 2020 process of the World Economic Forum, in which leaders from politics, business, academia, and civil society join efforts to improve the state of the world.
2013 Success Story!
Last October, close to 15,000 students in 65 schools from Nunavut to British Columbia, alongside 365,000 students from around the world organized to celebrate human dignity and to empower all those around us to live with mutual respect, tolerance and kindness. What’s more, for the first time we reached over 290,000 people around the world on Twitter alone! Culminating with a national videoconference on Parliament Hill, which linked 1,200 students from coast-to-coast, we were thrilled with the enthusiasm and support that GD received from all walks of life.
“15,000 students in Canada from Nunavut to British Columbia.”
We were also honoured with the support of politicians of all stripes, including: Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Hon. John Baird; Health Minister, the Hon. Rona Ambrose; Liberal Party of Canada Leader Justin Trudeau; Deputy Leader of the New Democratic Party, Megan Leslie; Senator Yonah Martin, Deputy Leader of the Government in the Senate; Halifax MP Scott Brison; Deputy Chief of Staff to the Chief of the Assembly of First Nations, Jeffrey Copenace and Inuit film maker Innosar Issakiark, to name a few.
In addition to our Canadian organizational partners – including TakingITGlobal, Right To Play, The World Economic Forum’s Canadian Global Shapers, YMCA Canada, The Canadian Commission to UNESCO and Adobe Youth Voices, amongst several others – we also received significant news coverage from CBC North, George Strombolopoulous, GlobalTV, CTV Barrie, The Ottawa Citizen (in their front page Throne speech article), the Huffington Post, the Montreal Global Shapers and the international Chinese television station NDTV.
GD Canada’s 2014 “Many Faces of Dignity” campaign celebrates the varied and diverse interpretations of human dignity and how these forces play out in our lives, like youth empowerment, anti-bullying, cultural diversity and beyond.
What is Required?
There is no cost to take part in GD and events have been designed to range anywhere from 15 minutes, to two hours, or even a full day. What’s more, GD celebrations are flexible and easy to integrate into any classroom setting. This year’s “Many Faces of Dignity” campaign celebrates the varied and diverse interpretations of human dignity and how these forces play out in our lives. By extension, this provides students with the opportunity to explore issues like youth empowerment, anti-bullying, cultural diversity and beyond.
“GD celebrations are flexible and easy to integrate into any classroom setting.”
In the attached agenda, you will find an overview of GD, complete with learning objectives. Throughout the GD process, students will learn about the importance of dignity in their own lives and the lives of others. From there, they will learn how to express what dignity means for them and they will learn how their own dignity is mutually dependent on the dignity of others.
Students Can Make a Difference!
Overall, it is our hope that by acknowledging existing inequalities, students will see that they have the ability to impact and enrich the lives of others through their own actions and choices, thereby promoting awareness and a social consciousness during a key time in their development.
“…promote awareness and a social consciousness…”
I encourage you to consider championing this global movement and help us to transform young lives, revitalize communities in Canada’s North, and mobilize young people from around the world to act for global change.
Register Your School
Visit www.globaldignity.ca and register your school / organization! Share this invitation with any individuals, groups and organizations who may be interested in supporting, volunteering or encouraging more people to participate in this important movement.
Get the PLAYMC2 App
Get the PLAYMC2 app and join the Less. More. campaign! Students will love posting their dignity microactions!!
- Students will learn about the importance of dignity in their own lives and the lives of others.
- Students will learn to express in their own words what dignity means for them and their lives.
- Students will learn about how their own dignity is mutually dependent on the dignity of others.
- Students will name something they are for and what they want to do during the course of the next year to strengthen the dignity of others.
Connections to Education:
- Character development must be a whole school effort.
- Character development supports student achievement because it: develops the whole student as an individual (as an engaged learner and as a citizen); contributes to respectful, safe, caring and inclusive school environments that are prerequisites for learning; creates learning environments that are positive and collaborative so that teachers spend less time disciplining and more time doing what they do best – namely, teaching.
- The increasing diversity of Canada’s population creates an opportunity for us to determine the beliefs and principles we hold in common. When school boards engage a wide cross-section of their communities in building consensus on character attributes, they are, in essence, engaged in a process of finding common ground.
- The principles and attributes of character development are universal, based in equity and transcend differences as well as other demographic factors. Empathy for others and respect for the dignity of all persons are essential characteristics of an inclusive society.
Connections to 21st Century Skills:
- Learning from individuals representing diverse cultures, religions and lifestyles in a spirit of mutual respect
Communication and Collaboration
- Articulate thoughts and ideas effectively using oral, written and nonverbal communication skills in a variety of forms and contexts
- Listen effectively to decipher meaning, including knowledge, values, attitudes and intentions
- Use communication for a range of purposes (e.g. to inform, instruct, motivate and persuade)
Global Dignity Principles:
- Every human being has a right to a dignified life;
- A dignified life means the opportunity to fulfill your potential. This means having a humane level of healthcare, education;
- Dignity means having the freedom to make decisions about your life and to be treated with respect with regard to this right;
- Dignity should be the basic guiding principle behind all actions;
- Ultimately, our dignity depends upon the dignity of others.
Global Dignity Day Overview (approx. 2 hours total):
- Global Dignity Leaders Announce Global Dignity Day for October 16, 2013 (johnhopebryant.com)
- Dignity and Self-Worth Quote of the Day (johnhopebryant.com)
- News Regarding His Royal Highness Crown Prince Haakon of Norway. (VIDEOS) (royalcorrespondent.com)
I had lunch yesterday with a former student of mine. It was my first year teaching. I was 21. She was 10. It was the early seventies. It was some forty years ago.
She proceeded to tell me how I changed her life through an art lesson on perspective and, specifically, on ‘how to see’ and to draw a tree. Her description was detailed and formidable. The actions I suggested and the emotions created in her changed the way she has looked at things since.
This former charge of mine then continued with countless other intricate stories of her learning and my teaching. I listened in amazement—and, admittedly, with much pleasure.
One of the things she said she loved most was that I was present. I listened and genuinely seemed to care.
I was flattered at having such a profound impact on this person.
Not All Good
But, I know, it wasn’t like that for all students in my classes throughout the years. I am sure not all had the benefit of my good side. What about those times when my weaknesses were in play?
My skilful switchblade of sarcasm.
My impatience and dreadful dismissiveness.
What about those times?
What impact did that have on some children?
Hey teacher. Choose your impact.
“Starner replied that he multiplexes rather than multitasks. Multiplexing means doing tasks that reinforce each other. For him, taking notes and having conversations are tasks that parallel and enrich each other. They are multiplexed. On the other hand, he doesn’t try to manage email during a conversation or while walking down the street. That would be multitasking. “If the wearable task is directly related to the conversation, the the user’s attention is not ‘split’ and multiplexing can be pretty effective.”
As Thad Starner explained to me, distraction can be avoided by multiplexing rather than multitasking…. We have no difficulty absorbing all at once the music of a parade, the sight of uniformed marchers, bright sunlight, an autumn breeze, a pain in one’s knee, the smell and taste of hot dogs, and the clasp of a loved ones’s hand.”
I love this distinction. NCTE’s notion of ”managing multiple streams of information’ makes sense when viewed as multiplexing. People have been interpreting this as multitasking – and this has been grossly incorrect in my opinion
See on kk.org
Engagement of video games has ‘become a Pandora’s box containing bait for the reptilian brain to feast on’
“The incessant warfare (the child) takes part in is not virtual to the child, it is his reality…at a superficial cognitive level they’re aware the game is only a virtual reality, but at a deeper, emotional level they know it is not. After all, it is happening to them”, says Csikszentmihalyi.
Csikszentmihalyi is clearly a world renowned expert in motivation, happiness and creativity. You likely know his work on ‘flow’. In fact, you are perhaps a real believer and apply it in your educational practice with students.
Csíkszentmihályi described flow as “being completely involved in an activity for its own sake. The ego falls away. Time flies. Every action, movement, and thought follows inevitably from the previous one, like playing jazz. Your whole being is involved, and you’re using your skills to the utmost.”
“To achieve a flow state, a balance must be struck between the challenge of the task and the skill of the performer. If the task is too easy or too difficult, flow cannot occur. Both skill level and challenge level must be matched and high; if skill and challenge are low and matched, then apathy results.’” Wikipedia
Many schools have ‘flow’ rooms or, at least, try to design educational experiences to engage students in the ‘zone’ – or a state of flow.*
“We are headed for ‘a quantum leap into an abyss of insubstantiality’.”
Csíkszentmihályi fears that ‘in one or two generations children will grow up to be adults unable to tell reality from imagination’. We are headed, he suggests, for ‘a quantum leap into an abyss of insubstantiality’.
What do you think?
*Note: It has been central to my ‘way of being’ in classrooms for many years. I even had my most recent classroom – and, indeed, have this blog called “The Construction Zone’. (‘Zone’ doubles for ‘state of flow’ and for ‘zone of proximal development’ (ZPD).