Friday, October 2, 2009

Are your students ready to STAND UP, SPEAK OUT and LEND A HAND against extremism and hunger?

Each year, MAGPI partners with several outstanding non-profit organizations to design interactive educational programming. One of my all-time favorite organizations to work with is The Gerda and Kurt Klein Foundation, and I am very pleased to announce our annual collaborative program: The STAND UP. SPEAK OUT. LEND A HAND! Project.

In the winter of 1945, on the day of her liberation from six years of Nazi rule, Gerda Weissmann clung to life at the end of a 350-mile death march. She weighed 68 pounds, her hair had turned white, and she had not had a bath in three years. She survived with courage, grace and dignity

Gerda Weissmann Klein, renowned motivational speaker and Holocaust survivor, teaches each one of us about tolerance, understanding and making a difference. Gerda Klein’s spirit helped her survive six years under Nazi rule; through her story, and her unique perspective, she continues to help each one of us to understand the dangers of hate and extremism.

Students involved in STAND UP. SPEAK OUT. LEND A HAND will hear from Gerda during a special interactive videoconference event and then embark upon their own service learning projects. Each participating school will be tasked with designing and implementing a service learning project that combats social issues in their community.

In order to maintain an on-going dialogue over the course of the project, each class will create a wiki page and posting bi-weekly updates on their projects. Once a month, schools will be assigned a partner class who will review and comment on their wiki page (and vice versa). Students will then reconvene via videoconference to share their service learning projects with the Klein Foundation during a celebratory "Project Collaboration Videoconference" in March. We will break schools into smaller groups for project sharing to encourage dialogue among students!

Here are the project dates - - mark them on your calendar:

  • You are the Messengers to a Time I Will Not See:
    A Conversation with Gerda Weissmann Klein Videoconference
    December 10, 2009 * 1:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m. ET
  • Supporting Your Students in their Service Learning Projects
    Teacher Workshop Videoconference
    January 21, 2010 * 3:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. ET
  • Student Service Learning Projects
    December – March
  • Service Project Celebration
    Student Sharing Videoconference Event
    March 24, 2010 * 10:00 a.m. – 2:00 p.m.
    Students/Classes will be assigned to a 50 minute interactive period during this time.

It's a three-month service learning challenge. Are your students ready to STAND UP, SPEAK OUT, and LEND A HAND against extremism and hunger?

To register for this program, please visit the program website.