Animal ethics, environmental stewardship, human interactions, and initiative skills are our main focuses of the curriculum. We will teach a different topic each day for four days and have mentor activities on the fifth day. The class will incorporate various materials such as videos, pictures, stories, and DIY activities to make the content accessible and interesting to the students.
Mahatma Gandhi: "The greatness of a nation and its moral progress can be judged by the way its animals are treated."
Animals are involved in various activities of humans’ daily lives. In class we will explore the origins of our food, clothing, and other usages humans make of animals. What crises are the wildlife and domestic animals facing respectively and what actions have been taken? Where should we draw the line between humane treatment, mindful consumption and exploitation? We will guide the students to think about the logical and ethical reasoning behind animal protection, explain how to protect both yourself and the animals when interacting with them, and make toys for the shelter animals that we will visit. Students will be encouraged to develop an appreciation and concern for animals as sentient beings.
Kofi Annan: “All of us have to share the Earth's fragile ecosystems and precious resources, and each of us has a role to play in preserving them.”
Humans should know about the environment we live in, other living beings that are sharing the planet with us, and how we, as a part of nature, can live harmoniously within it. We will introduce to the students the history of environmental change and movement, discuss major Chinese environmental issues, and reflect on global issues such as climate change and global warming. Students will be connected to the local environment through outdoor activities such as garbage collection and nature walk, through which they will learn about Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, as well as local plants, animals, and habitats. We will also have in-class activities such as carbon role play and DIY shopping bag.
J.K. Rowling:“We're all human, aren't we?”
We will give students appropriate guidance on identity exploration and exposure to the world outside students’ immediate circles; teach them how to directly and properly approach biological differences and sexual relationships; help them recognize the vast diversity of the world. This experience will teach them how to be kind to those who come from disadvantaged positions, understand different cultures, and develop sympathy and respect towards each other. We will use some cases that reflect the development and problem of social issues such as justice, citizenship, responsibility to illustrate the significance of human rights, equality, and diversity. Some issues we will cover are human trafficking, unequal access to resources, gendered stereotype, and child labor. Students will also participate in story sharing and movie watching to enhance their understanding.
SKILLS AND TOOLS
Henry Ford: "Whether you think you can or whether you think you can't, you're right."
Our societies can only make progress when people take initiative and implement constructive solutions. Through training in logic and critical thinking, as well as in practical skills including generating solutions, implementing ideas, and communication skills, we will provide students with the skills and tool set to make an impact. Teaching will be conducted with both in-class demonstration as well as the following activities.
Students will be divided into groups of five or six. A Chinese high school volunteer will be assigned to each group to act as the teaching assistant and guide this group through activities and class content.
Each group will choose a topic of either animal protection or environmental preservation for a 15-minute group presentation. They can choose a topic we for a case study, or find a topic of their interest by themselves.
- animal-related issues: seal hunting, bullfighting, puppy mills, etc;
- environment-related issues: plastic pollution, habitat protection, etc.
We will invite mentors, mainly Chinese university students and students studying abroad in foreign institutions. Each mentor has rich experience in one or two fields, such as computer science, astronomy, studying and/or living abroad, etc. On the last day of the camp, they will spend the day with students in workshops and group discussions to share interests, experiences and advice.
We will practice bilingual teaching in order to improve students' ability to communicate more efficiently with the global community and receive information from more international channels. For important concepts and keywords, we will introduce them in both English and Chinese. We will also teach words that are frequently used in English but not covered by traditional English textbooks. At least one native speaker will be in the camp providing English instruction. He/she will both teach the section of his/her expertise in basic English with necessary Chinese translation assistance, and have simple communications with students.