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Changing the World for the Better One Microloan at a Time

Page history last edited by Bill 7 years, 7 months ago

Changing the World for the Better One Microloan at a Time


Direct Link to these Session Resources:  http://bit.ly/STWebinarNov2014


In Stratosphere: Integrating Technology, Pedagogy and Change Knowledge (2012), school change expert Michael Fullan contends that “if we are going to invest money, time and other resources in purchasing and integrating technology…it needs to lead to the development of 21st Century skills and ways of thinking required by students to be global critical citizens who can help change the world for the better.”  Changing the world for the better in Bill Ferriter’s middle school classroom and in Diana Williams' elementary school classroom happens when their students come together to make microloans to entrepreneurs in the developing world, a practice introduced in this Solution Tree webinar.




Slides for this Webinar


The slides for today's webinar are embedded below.  They can also be downloaded here.  






Microlending as an Example of Changing the World for the Better


Bill Ferriter and Diana Williams both use microlending to give students an opportunity to change the world for the better.  To learn more about the project and the role that it plays in Bill and Diana's classrooms, explore the following resources:


One Tweet CAN Change the World - In this blog post, session presenter Bill Ferriter details the origins of his Kiva Microlending work and shares the rationale and resources for connecting microlending projects to the required curriculum.


The Story of How I Found My Joy - In this blog post, session presenter Diana Williams details the origins of her Kiva Microlending work and shares details about how her club raised money to use in their classroom lending efforts.


Salem Middle School Kiva Video - This link connects to a video made by two eighth grade students in session presenter Bill Ferriter's middle school Kiva Club.  It was developed to be used in persuasive speeches given by Kiva Club members who were looking for monetary donations from local businesses. 


Kiva Because We Care - This link connects to a second video made by students in session presenter Bill Ferriter's middle school Kiva Club.  It provides a convincing look inside the reasons that students care about opportunities to do work that matters. 


The Grade Three Kiva Ninjas - This link connects to a video made by Diana Williams and her third grade students.  It details both the criteria and process that they use while making Kiva loans and the joy they feel about helping the world around them.


Resources Used in Bill and Diana's Microlending Projects


Kiva Website - Kiva is an organization in San Francisco that makes microlending possible by pairing interested lenders in the developed world with entrepreneurs in need of loans in the developing world.  While there are other sites and services that make microlending possible, Kiva is the largest.


Kiva U - Understanding that microlending can be a powerful learning experience for students in modern classrooms, the Kiva team has begun to develop a collection of instructional materials that are connected to learning standards and that can be used to make connections between microlending and the required curricula.  


Animoto Website - Animoto is a tool for making engaging online videos out of PowerPoint presentations.  The reason that session presenter Bill Ferriter uses Animoto is because (1). it automates the transitions between images, resulting in a highly polished final product without needing a high level of technical skill and (2). it provides users with access to an extensive library of Creative Commons music.


Creative Commons Website - Projects that give students the opportunity to experiment with visual persuasion are perfect opportunities to introduce Creative Commons, a new form of copyright where creators grant permission to use their content in advance.  This link connects to the Creative Commons website, where participants can learn more about the different licenses used by content creators, where participants can find a tool that makes searching for Creative Commons content easier, and where participants can watch a video that explains just what the Creative Commons is. 


Student Microlending Handouts - While session presenter Bill Ferriter has created dozens of handouts for use with his Kiva microlending work, participants generally find three to be the most useful.  The Which Country Should We Loan To handout is designed to help students think about how key quality of life indicators can impact lending decisions, the Kiva Loan Questions handout is designed to help students think about the characteristics of good Kiva loans, and the Setting Kiva Lending Priorities handout is designed to help students determine the types of loans that they care the most about. 


You may also find the Lending to Women, Lending to a Group and Giving a Kiva Gift Card handouts useful.  They introduce students to the pros and cons of three of the most common Kiva lending decisions.  The Kiva Loan Reflection Organizer and the Microlending Self Assessment Handouts can help you to integrate opportunities for formal and informal assessment into your classroom practices -- and the Do Something Funny for Money Day handout introduces an easy fundraising opportunity that you can use to build your initial microlending account.  


The students in Diana Williams's class use this lending rubric -- which includes criteria that they developed together as part of a larger classroom conversation -- to determine whether or not a Kiva project is worth supporting.  


Creating Influential Visuals Handouts - While session presenter Bill Ferriter has created dozens of handouts for introducing students to the characteristics of influential visuals, participants generally find three to be the most useful.  The Characteristics of Memorable Images handout asks students to examine the strengths and weaknesses of two student-made PowerPoint slides, the Checklist for Creating an Influential Visual handout walks students through a series of questions designed to support the creation of influential visuals, and the Examining a Video handout asks students to watch the Salem Middle School Poverty's Real video and identify the key structural elements of a persuasive video. 



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