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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

Haiti: What can you and your classes do right now to help

Haiti: What can you and your classes do right now to help

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As I'm sure you'll all aware, yesterday (1/12/10), a massive earthquake struck Haiti, devastating its capital. Hundreds of thousands are feared dead and The Red Cross reports that over 3 million people have been affected. So..I'm wondering if any of you and your classes are planning to do anything to help. Here are some resources I've quickly compiled: :: New York Times created a Twitter list, where you can follow the latest updates in real-time. :: You can also follow a live stream of tweets about Haiti by searching "help haiti" on Twitter. :: This seems to be the most popular way people are donating: Text "HAITI" to 90999 to donate $10 to the Red Cross (It automatically gets added to your phone bill) :: Here's Six ways you can help in Haiti. :: Lastly, here's another article that lists the many ways you can help Haiti earthquake victims. Please share what you plan on doing. Fundraisers, having your class follow the Twitter feeds, whatever you're doing -- please share!

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Betty Ray's picture
Betty Ray
Director of Programming and Innovation @Edutopia

Following up on Elana's question, how are teachers approaching this tragedy in the classroom? Are you talking about it with students? Showing photos? Reviewing disaster preparedness? Hosting fundraisers?

I'd be interested in hearing how students want to help, too.

Lora Ma-Fukuda's picture
Lora Ma-Fukuda
mom & former exec producer @edutopia.org

For those interested in helping Haiti immediately, simply text "HAITI" to "90999" and a donation of $10 will be given automatically to the Red Cross to help with relief efforts, charged to your cell phone bill.

Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer

Salesforce is matching dollar for dollar all donations made to Haiti:

Through the Salesforce.com Foundation's matching program, you can double the impact of your donation to one of two organizations we've been working with: the Red Cross and World Vision. If you donate even $2, that alone is more than what most of Haiti's population survives on per day.

Donate by clicking the links on this page, and the Foundation will automatically match, dollar-for-dollar, donations from our community of customers, partners, employees, and friends, up to $100,000. That means that with the Foundation's matching funds, these critical organizations will get $200,000 in much-needed donations.

Myra's picture


Thanks for the links. Any suggestions for those of us who have who have a large population of Haitian students in school/class? General lesson plans on Earthquakes and Haiti don't feel appropriate, and I'm not certain what else to do (other than write, share, talk etc) to help students feel less helpless as they wait for news & get news from families back in Haiti.

Cindy Johanson's picture
Cindy Johanson
executive director @ Edutopia and mom of 2 kids

Some of the schools with large populations of Haitian students are providing counseling and support services. One of the best posts I've seen from a teacher who effectively brought this tragedy into the classroom is called Life vs. the Curriculum. It's an inspirational example of how you might incorporate these real world events into a multi-dimensional discussion in the classroom.

Andrew Pass's picture

I have developed several blog posts with questions about the situation in Haiti.

A Twenty First Century News Story
An International Response to Haiti
Haitian Earthquake

Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer


I just came across a pretty good blog that had a couple of resources that may be helpful.

Elana Leoni's picture
Elana Leoni
Director of Social Media Strategy and Marketing @Edutopia, edcamp organizer

I asked this question to our Facebook fans and here's what they shared:

Cristina Brandii Saileanu-Tuckness
using the whiteboard to share all sorts of videos, charity programs, maps, & statistics; 5th & 6th grade students have been engaged & want to help.

Wendy Bruntz Niccoli
Taught all classes about the Richter scale today, without getting into the logrithmic work too much since they are middle schoolers. Compared to to other exponential functions that shoot off... Just an idea of what 7.0 means for Haiti compared to the CA quake last weekend. We also discussed what the habitat standards in the country and lack of ... See Moreinfrastructure can mean as a result, when compared to CA building codes and their standard of living. We had amazing discussions and now they want to help!

Jennifer Chidsey Pizzo
From IRIS, a consortium sponsored by NSF for seismic data

A major earthquake occurred Tuesday in the boundary region separating the Caribbean plate and the North America plate. This plate boundary is dominated by left-lateral strike slip motion and compression, and accommodates about 20 mm/y slip, with the Caribbean plate moving eastward with respect to the North America plate.

You can go to URL below to download a classroom - friendly PDF,... See More
PowerPoint, and QuickTime animation about the Haiti earthquake.


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