ГБОУ школа №571
Научный руководитель – М.А.Цепелева
When I first met the abbreviation UNESCO, I didn’t even know what it meant. As I’m very curious, I decided to find out the information about it. This is what I learnt.
The United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) is an agency within the United Nations that is responsible for promoting peace, social justice, human rights and international security through international cooperation on educational, science and cultural programs. It is based in Paris, France and has over 50 field offices located around the world.
Today, UNESCO has five major themes to its programs which include 1) education, 2) natural sciences, 3) social and human sciences, 4) culture, and 5) communication and information.
UNESCO is also actively working to achieve the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals but it is focused on achieving the goals of significantly reducing extreme poverty in developing countries by 2015, developing a program for universal primary education in all countries by 2015, eliminating gender inequalities in primary and secondary education, promoting sustainable development and reducing the loss of environmental resources.
One of UNESCO's most famous special themes is its World Heritage Center which identifies cultural, natural and mixed sites to be protected all over the world in an effort to promote the maintenance of cultural, historic and/or natural heritage in those places for others to see. These include the Pyramids of Giza, Australia's Great Barrier Reef and Peru's Machu Picchu.
I asked my friends and classmates about UNESCO, unfortunately they knew even less than me. I wondered who would be able to fulfill all the goals of this organization if no one knew about it. I asked my English teacher and she suggested studying the problem together.
It is interesting to learn that different generations are given different names. I’m a representative of Generation Z (or Gen Z). This is a generation of children born between 1995 and 2010. Those who were born from 1965 to 1980 are Gen X. Those who were born from 1981 to 1995 are Gen Y. Thus, we’re the youngest generation on the planet, but one of the most talked about, the most complex, and the one with the highest set of expectations. Some other names suggested for the cohort include iGeneration (iGen), Gen Tech, Gen Wii, Net Gen, Digital Natives and Plurals. All generations are different. The time leaves its impact on all of them. Now the time has seriously changed the world. That is why our generation is so different from others.
Technologies and the Internet are the main things that influence our life. We know them literally from the first year of our life. One key difference from Millennials is: most members of iGen or Gen Z don’t remember a time before social media. As a result, we tend to live much more of our entire lives - from interacting with friends and family to making major purchases - online and via our smartphones. This could have profound implications for everything from our relationships and how we learn to virtual reality training and problem-solving. Most of our hobbies are related with Information Technologies. There is no difficulty for us to make a clip, a presentation or a cartoon or other content and upload them on the Internet and show it to the whole world. We are content-makers. Gen Z is also adept at web-based research and often self-educates with online sources such as YouTube and Pinterest. We can learn complex things like how to upgrade our computer’s operating system the same way we can learn how to bake a vegan apple pie: one video at a time. We still possess general knowledge about traditional research methods, but we have come of age placing a priority on how fast we can find the right information rather than on whether or not we know the right information. We love technology. Why? Brand management. Every tweet and Instagram post contributes to our ‘person’. What we share on social media is an extension of our lives.
Plenty of information we get makes us grow up faster and makes us more educated. We receive different kinds of information, even that we should not have to. But, not everyone is getting new information. Some of us are wasting the time (not me).
Gen Z are more diverse than Millennials. This is a big deal and is often overlooked. The tremendous diversity that Gen Z brings as employees, consumers and entrepreneurs will have a profound impact across generations and cultures. Brands and employers will have to learn how to see the world through the diverse eyes of Gen Z if they want to win their loyalty.
Gen Z wants to make a difference in the world. A large portion of the generation would prefer to have a job that makes a positive impact in some way, and a large portion of them volunteer. However, it’s unclear what impact school-based volunteer requirements are having on volunteer rates among iGen. What we do know is that an overwhelming majority of iGen and Gen Z are eco-conscious and concerned about humanity’s impact on the environment. We also know that iGen wants to make a decent living with a stable employer. This practical aspect of financial prudence and wanting to help people could lead to longer-term differentiation from Millennials. We want to change the world. And we can do it. Gen Z is taking part in politics. As it was in Russia when teenagers protested against corruption. As it was in America in recent days. There was a lot of school shooting and all American students started to protest the gun violence.
“Spread the word!
Have you heard?
All across the nation,
We are going to be
A great generation!” - said Martin Luther King's granddaughter on that protest.
Generation Z likes others to know that they are succeeding. Political correctness has contributed to this. Everyone wants to be a winner.
I have asked my classmates some questions about their interests, school, learning, the problems they face, the solvation they see (the Questionnaire is in Annex 1). Here are some problems that I have found: boring lessons and teachers, almost no choice and unfair teachers (the results are in Annex 2).
To become people who will be able to save and protect the world we must be treated and engaged in a different way. Here are some tips for the teachers on how you should consider communicating with Generation Z:
Interact and Engage
The young people of Generation Z love to interact, engage and be actively involved. Think about introducing interactive games, quizzes and puzzles into your lesson plans. Make use of a wide variety of resources such as websites, videos and search engines like Google for researching topics.
Make use of Generation Z’s love for technology and love for their favourite objects, often the mobile phone. Introduce elements of flipped learning into your lesson plans, by switching students to learn elements online where they can study at their own pace: pausing, rewinding and fast forwarding as they wish. Use Access Tube to watch videos. Ask us to look up and watch a video clip on the subject. We can replay, pause, get tested, get feedback, create our own video, create a mindmap, create a quiz, create a mindmap, create a podcast, contribute to a new learning resource, etc. Make resources colourful and interesting by using images and diagrams.
Collaborate and Create
Generation Z’ers love to collaborate and create. Task us with creating our own learning resources and doing our own research on a subject. Set us off with a framework and let us do the rest. Make use of blogs and wikis for us to create and edit resources and share resources. You can set up a free account for a wiki on PBWorks.
The New Realist generation wants its news straight. Moreover, we need the information to be reliable. We need others trust and respect us, respect our opinion.
“Generation Z wants to be part of something,” said Wissink. “They want to do something real, and they have the digital tools to make it happen now. They’re starting businesses with Kickstarter, raising money to draw attention to a cause or fight an injustice, and at the end of the day they want to share it with everyone they know. This generation is breaking down barriers. And if the tools don’t exist to implement their plans, they’ll invent the app.”
If our motivation is kept properly, we’ll be the right people to fulfill the aims of UNESCO, the right people to save the world and maybe the right people to create some unique things to be protected in a distant future.