Last week, 6,966 students from 52 countries connected on PenPal Schools. Here are some of our favorite posts!
"In my opinion diversity is important. Diversity is the reason people are able to learn and grow from each other. It is very important for all people to experience and learn about the lives of others from different ethnic backgrounds, sexual orientations, and origins. Not only is it important to learn about others, but using the information we learn and implementing it into our everyday lives by forming new and different perspectives and seeing where people are coming from with their beliefs. If we were all to be around the same people exactly like ourselves, we would learning nothing new. That is why diversity is so important and something all people should value and strive to learn more about."
- Julia ( USA shared in Race in America)
"Two highlights from studying with PenPals were how I got to learn about what life is like for kids all over the world and how I got to tell them my ideas and how they got to tell me theirs. I especially liked when I could relate something from my life to something from somebody else's, even if we don't live in the same place. For example, I had many PenPals tell me that they were concerned with climate change and noticed a lack of snow where they lived just like I did. I would like to know what other thoughts and ideas they have and what other similarities or differences there might be between us."
- Gianna, USA (Shared in Protecting the Planet)
"I have seen a documentary about the educational system of France. I was impressed by French college entrance exam called 'Baccalaureat'. It's not just a normal exam but highly complex interview exam that evaluates students' thinking abilities, not memorization skills. I am really curious of such educational system because I like to give my opinion about what I have learned to my classmates. So if I could go to school in a different country for one year, I would go to France."
-Yang, South Korea (Shared in Schools around the World)
"I learned a lot from my penpals about what they eat. I even tried one of penpal my penpal treats. Trying the recipes of your penpals gives you a chance to taste different foods. It was really fun learning about different spices some I never even heard of, but thanks to penpal schools I know what they are. This project was really fun. When I got my first assignment on penpal schools I was so excited. The best part is learning about different cultures and foods. When I have a new assignment on penpal schools I'm ready to jump on board. Every day is a new adventure! Making new friends in penpal schools gives you a chance to meet someone that's really far away. My advice is to have fun when you are in penpal schools"
- Jala A, USA (shared in A World of Food)
These are just a few of the thousands of posts that students shared last week. If you would like to connect your students with PenPals, start by choosing from over 50 academic topics.
And if your students are sharing great work on PenPal Schools, please submit a nomination for next week!
On March 21st, more than 1,000 students from over 30 countries celebrated World Poetry Day in the PenPal Schools Global Poetry Contest. Students wrote and shared original poetry, then voted for their favorite poems written by their peers!
Students poets came from countries like Somalia, Thailand, Argentina, and the United States. No matter where students live, poetry allows them to share their thoughts and perspectives with the world. In the Global Poetry Contest, students wrote poetry about history, the environment, sports, pets, and beloved family members. Their poems expressed emotions like grief, love, fear, anticipation, and gratitude. Join us in congratulating our 2020 Global Poetry Contest winners!
When Mr. Knight wants to engage his students in academics, he looks for activities that offer student choice and opportunities to engage with an authentic audience.
Since joining the PenPal Schools community in 2018, Mr. Knight, a Grade 5 teacher from Canada, and his students have studied mythology from communities around the world, discussed environmental issues, and learned how art can inspire action and bring communities together.
This month, we’re excited to highlight two of Mr. Knight’s students as PenPal Stars for their outstanding work in the Protecting the Planet topic on PenPal Schools!
Meet PenPal Star Matt, a Grade 7 student from South Africa! Matt and his classmates recently participated in two PenPal Schools topics, World Explorer and Plant & Animal Adaptation.
Over 900 students from more than 17 different countries participated in the Giving Thanks Photography & Essay contest on PenPal Schools. Students from the United States, Mexico, Thailand, and Lithuania shared photographs and wrote essays about the people, places, and things that they are most grateful for. From the 900 contest participants, seven students were selected as contest winners!
Young people around the world have been speaking up for climate change (or climate crisis, depending on the language used in your part of the world!). On PenPal Schools, students discuss the changing environment and examine factors influencing the environment around the world. Meet PenPal Star Addison from the USA, one of the winners of our Global Earth Day Challenge!
Over 700 students from more than 20 different countries participated in the 2019 PenPal Schools Personal Essay Contest. Students wrote about their families, favorite hobbies, and special possessions. Students wrote about academic and athletic accomplishments, their experiences moving, and the loss of family members. After reviewing each essay and looking at the reactions and comments that each essay received from peers in the PenPal community, our team selected three contest winners and ten contest finalists!
With over 10,000 students learning together on PenPal Schools this October, it’s no surprise that we have many exceptional students to celebrate as PenPal Stars! This month’s PenPal Stars include a student from Canada who created a college budget, students from the USA who designed their dream schools, a student from Russia who created a global cookbook, and many more.
There’s a reason why World Explorer is the most popular PenPal Schools topic. When students are introduced to global PenPals, they naturally want to learn more about the world! In World Explorer, PenPals explore daily life, food, history, and pop culture together as they design original projects to share what they’ve learned.
Today’s PenPal Star is Erik from Sweden! Erik recently participated in World Explorer and had a chance to learn more about the world while teaching his PenPals about Sweden.
Across cultures, there is one tradition that brings people together like nothing else: food! People gather to break bread in celebration, to build community, and to continue traditions. Food tells a story, it can make people feel at home and spark memories. So, it’s no wonder that students around the world love to compare foods!
Meet the newest PenPal Star, Metehan from Turkey! Metehan did a great job of sharing Turkish foods with PenPals from around the world in A World of Food, helping his PenPals learn more about popular foods in Turkey.