George Lucas Educational Foundation
Subscribe to RSS

Five-Minute Film Festival: Developing Global Citizens

Ashley Cronin

Digital Resource Curator
  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Pinterest
  • Share
Graphic of globe labeled "Earthling."

In our increasingly connected and interdependent world, it’s critically important that young people have opportunities to engage with diverse cultural perspectives, build geographic knowledge, grow global competency, and develop the skills and knowledge necessary to consider and address our shared global challenges. At Global Education Day in Atlanta this year, I was inspired by all the ways that educators are bringing these kinds of experiences into the classroom. How do you teach global citizenship? Check out this video playlist for ideas and inspiration.

Video Playlist: Developing Global Citizens

Watch the player below to see the whole playlist, or view it on YouTube.


  1. Planetary Collective Presents CONTINUUM [Trailer] (3:16)

    Poets, astronauts, storytellers, and others discuss our shared planetary destiny; in tandem with OVERVIEW, an earlier film about astronauts’ stories of seeing the Earth from space, this clip may help spark conversations about global stewardship.

  2. World Peace and other 4th-Grade Achievements (8:30)

    Interviews and classroom footage offer a satisfying snapshot into John Hunter's The World Peace Game, a game-based learning activity crafted to teach students about global challenges. For more, check out Hunter’s talk for Big Think or his TED talk.

  3. Ubuntu, Global Oneness Project (8:17)

    This film about an African philosophy of human kindness is one of many films produced and curated by the Global Oneness Project. See their educator materials; the films can serve as introductions to global themes, environmental issues, and multicultural awareness.

  4. Map Your World (3:39)

    The Map Your World project enables young people to create interactive data maps on key community issues and collaborate with students and educators worldwide through the Map Your World platform. Be sure to explore the corresponding curriculum.

  5. The Global Classroom, Live From South Africa (13:45)

    In this talk from TEDxCapeTownED, Steve Sherman talks about how technology is creating new possibilities for global collaboration among educators and students. His forays into global education might help you generate some ideas of your own.

  6. Mystery Skype: Connecting Classrooms Around the World (1:58)

    Mystery location calls (whether via Skype, Google Hangout, or similar technologies) are an accessible strategy for connecting students to other classrooms around the world. If you're not already familiar, this video from Microsoft is a nice primer.

  7. What is Global Read Aloud? (1:11)

    Teacher Pernille Ripp explains the genesis of the Global Read Aloud, a collaborative effort by teachers all over the world to read the same book aloud to their classes during September. Learn how to participate on the the Global Read Aloud website.

  8. Dancing Around the World (4:12)

    In 2014, the internet exploded with dance videos set to Pharrell William’s hit song "Happy." Teacher Lisa Parisi, co-founder of the Our Global Friendships Wiki, helped her students work with other students across the globe to create a video that will make you smile.

More Resources for the Global Educator

One of the best ways to find resources and ideas for teaching global citizens is to connect with other global educators. The free, entirely virtual, fifth annual Global Education Conference, held Monday, November 17 through Friday, November 21, 2014, is a good place to do just that. In addition, whether you’ve been fostering your students’ global competence for many years or are just getting started, here are a few resources that should help.

Are you aware of any other useful resources? Please share them in the comments!

Was this useful?

Comments (5) Sign in or register to comment Follow Subscribe to comments via RSS

Jennifer's picture
Parent, volunteer, global citizen

I have been involved with CISV (Children's International Summer Villages) for over five years. We have 21 chapters in the USA and over 70 international member associations. Each year, chapters host programs for delegates from around the world. We began in 1951, when Doris Twitchell Allen (child psychologist) realized that children were the key to peace in our time. Beginning at age 11, children can apply and be selected as a delegate for their country. They are offered programs in which they live together with delegates from other countries, all the while using experiential learning techniques to develop friendships. When these children finish their 21-28 day programs, they are inspired, global citizens! Thanks to social media, Skype and email, they are able to easily keep in touch and remain friends for many years if they choose to. CISV is changing the way children view themselves and the world around them. Many of my colleagues and friends have had their children experience this amazing program. My own son is applying for his fourth program this year. Not only do they develop lasting friendships, but they are learning leadership skills as well. They must apply, interview and be selected from their chapters. They are often required to give presentations after their return home. Local involvement, for those families that choose not to apply for international programs, includes an executive board for juniors as well as becoming a member of the Junior Branch (JB). Many youth learn the roles and responsibilities of governing, leadership and group dynamics. In addition, their experiences are invaluable when they begin their journey into college applications and life after high school. CISV is run almost entirely by volunteers worldwide! Inspired global citizens investing in the future through children! Doesn't get any better than that!

Michael Van Laanen's picture

We have just launched the Our Rock Project, Our non-profit PBL educational program combines STEM education with the art of documentary film. We ask middle and high school students to research a STEM topic and produce a short 4-7 minute documentary film. Students are encouraged to seek out local scientists, engineers. administrators, professors, etc. in the related STEM field and interview them for their film production. Children explore subjects to answers questions such as, "Where does your water come from?" "What kind of food do you eat and where does it come from?" "What kinds of flora or fauna do you have there?". Once the students have completed their film productions, we will host them in our archive where the translated and captioned films are made available to geography and social studies classrooms around the world. Our web site is free and open access is provided to anyone who wishes to learn about our planet through the eyes and words of the children. We hope to reach out across the globe to have students in every country participate in the Our Rock Project.
Side-note: The website has just soft launched so all of the links are not up and working yet, but we hope to have them operational in a few weeks. You should be able to get a good idea of who we are and what we do there and see a few of the sample films that the children have produced during the two year pilot test of the project.

Anamaria Knight-VIF International Education's picture
Anamaria Knight-VIF International Education
Director of Curriculum and Instructional Design, VIF International Education

Many of the resources mentioned in this article can easily be connected to curricular standards. In our lessons, we have used, for instance, Mystery Skype to connect with classrooms from around the world and discuss various topics across all core subjects. Thank you for this great list - we will definitely refer to this as we develop more curricular resources.

Kate H.'s picture

Thank you for these resources! These are great ways to get students interested and exploring this BIG world. Many of these are tools that align conveniently with the common core standards. I especially like the Map Your World project and could see that being used in my classroom in a variety of methods such as a form of alternative assessment.

Sign in to comment. Not a member? Register.