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Fostering a community of Cambridge students and teachers in Latin America

Cambridge Learners  US  

What if Cambridge students from different schools had the opportunity to showcase their learnings from Cambridge Global Perspectives and share their knowledge and understanding of the many global issues within society?

What if, by gathering a group of passionate and creative students, we could develop a better understanding of cultural diversity, and societal challenges and connect a community of students and teachers?

Well, the Cambridge Global Perspectives Fair held in Latin America did just that!

Cambridge Global Perspectives is an innovative and skills-based subject offered in the Cambridge curriculum. It gives students the ability to think critically and engage with a range of global issues from the environment, to politics and inclusion.

From 15-18 May 2023, a group of primary students from sixteeen Primary schools across Latin America and the Caribbean, studying Cambridge Primary Global Perspectives, came together to present various projects around the Covid-19 pandemic, sustainability, technology, and innovation to an audience of students, teachers, principals, and Cambridge International colleagues. From Peru and Colombia to Brazil, Chile, and Uruguay, students aged 10 to 12 took the spotlight as they led motivated and compelling discussions on the social issues that were major drivers for their projects.

A panel of teachers hosted the event encouraging deeper thinking by asking questions that sparked fascinating discussions and active participation. Some of these discussions occurred spontaneously between the students who were presenting and students from other schools and countries who were observing. The conversations showed so much passion, interest, and confidence that adult involvement fell to a minimum.

This was great for encouraging free thinking and allowing the students to think outside of the box!

Creating a community of collaborators

One of the most note-worthy takeaways from the Cambridge Global Perspectives Fair is the beautiful sense of collaboration and community that came as a result.

One of the students highlighted ‘unity’ as a crucial factor in resolving global issues and said – “many children in Latin America have similar concerns, so we could all work together to solve many of these problems.” This shared love for cooperating on social justice and empowerment was found in all the sessions, which panellists found fascinating to observe; one member of the panel described it as “the highlight of my year!!”

The fair was also fantastic for developing the students’ teamwork abilities and forming genuine bonds through a mutual interest in securing a diverse, caring environment for all.

An incredibly heart-warming part of the event was the level of detail and research achieved by the students. The care and attention invested in the individual projects spoke volumes as to the fire that had been ignited within the students. It also opened some students’ eyes to their love for charity. When discussing the event, one student said she wanted to “continue helping others” because it makes her feel good. The Cambridge Global Perspectives Fair certainly had a strong impact on students and cultivated a new enthusiasm for philanthropy and bettering the world around us for the wider community.

Students’ charts showing their energy consumption bills at home

A shared commitment to Sustainability

One of the core values of Cambridge University Press & Assessment is the organisation’s commitment to sustainability. Cambridge is dedicated to contributing to the climate emergency and aims to have a 72 percent reduction in energy-related emissions by 2030.

These ambitions for creating a greener future step-by-step also followed on into the Cambridge Global Perspectives Fair, leaving students considering what they could do to put an end to the climate crisis. 

So, students looked at cleaner energy, reducing their global footprint, and what to do to contribute to the fight against climate change as part of their projects for the Fair.

The photo above is one of the charts created by students showing their energy consumption bills. In doing so, the children learned necessary information on how energy consumption works, how to lower your carbon footprint, and the impact of everyday activities such as filling up the car with gas, accidentally leaving a tap running, or leaving a light on in an empty room can have on the planet and worsen the climate crisis.

This opened the students’ eyes to the urgency of climate change, with one of them saying “the more we let time go through without doing anything about this, the less energy we will have for the future.”

The focus on sustainability at the Cambridge Global Perspectives Fair strengthened the students’ knowledge and understanding of climate change and what that would mean for the future. It also led to a lot of students becoming more aware and motivated to make a difference; many went on to create posters advertising against wasting water and encouraging mindfulness on the impact we have on the environment and the importance of reducing our carbon footprint. Some of these posters (made by some budding artists!) are depicted below:

Students’ posters

To conclude, the Cambridge Global Perspectives Fair had a long-lasting impact on students and teachers who were given the opportunity to share their knowledge of global issues. It was a learning curve for students in the region to find out about social issues such as xenophobia and global issues like climate change. It also helped increase students’ awareness of globally shared challenges and the many ways that we can work together to generate solutions to them and its success has wholly made it an event to remember!

Expect further events in the future similar to this fair, to give students a space to discuss their desire to make a difference and showcase the progress they’ve been making to achieve that. 

It will be very interesting to keep an eye out for these students to see them reach their full potential and the many successes they’ll go on to achieve in the future!

This event was organised by the following Cambridge International colleagues:

Lucila Márquez, Senior Manager, Latin America

Anik Blanchard, Schools Development Manager, Chile, Central America and the Caribbean

Roberta Lima, Schools Development Manager, Brazil,

Sofia Hughes, Schools Development Manager, Argentina,

and Rebecca Watkins-Wright, Curriculum Development Manager Products Service.

This blog was written by Lamin, a Year 10 student from Milton Keynes, UK, as part of our work with our local community.

Find out more about Cambridge Global Perspectives

Read more about our commitment to Sustainability

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