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6th Graders in School for Global Leaders Learn How to Make Real Change
Air Date: 12/23/2008
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6th Graders in School for Global Leaders Learn How to Make Real Change

ANN CURRY, anchor:

Finally tonight, our week-long MAKING A DIFFERENCE series and new options in education. Our story tonight is about a program that has educators starting early to introduce students to real world issues beyond the classroom. The idea is to help motivate them to make a difference in the world.

Unidentified Teacher #1: Good morning.

Unidentified boy #1: Good morning, Ms....(unintelligible).

CURRY: Every weekday, 81 sixth graders meet in a New York public school.

Unidentified Teacher #2: Did you learn anything about hunger?

CURRY: Where every inch, even the uniforms...

Unidentified Boy #2: School for global leaders.

CURRY: ...is about saving the world.

Ms. CARRY CHAN: How much money are the auto companies asking?

CURRY: Principal Carry Chan opened the doors in August.

Ms. CHAN: Every single student that walks into that building has something to contribute to the world.

CURRY: How'd you get this idea? Were you a do-gooder as a kid?

Ms. CHAN: Yeah, absolutely.

CURRY: One of the growing number of American educators who use the world and its problems as real life lessons for every subject.

Unidentified Teacher #3: So many different issues are involved in this.

CURRY: Partnering with aid organizations like Mercy Corps, their newly opened action center is a field classroom.


To learn more about Mercy Corps nightly.msnbc.com

Unidentified Teacher #4: What are my priorities?

CURRY: Preparing kids and teaching compassion.

Unidentified Girl #1: Educating people on world hunger is an action that we can take.

Unidentified Boy #3: You can like inspire other people to help the world.

CURRY: You're worried about poverty. You're worried about HIV. You're worried about people suffering. And you're worried about climate change.

Ms. CHAN: We're so adamant about promoting this education, starting at this age, because they're really questioning, you know, `What is my impact in this world?'

CURRY: Chan's faculty is inspired.

Unidentified Teacher #5: In first through fifth grade, they are kind of closed off, right? They're learning on social studies and English and science and math, not really applying those ideas to the things that they really care about.

CURRY: And care they do.

Ms. BUFRA MIA: There are many people that need our help.

CURRY: Bufra Mia has absorbed the lessons deeply.

Why do you empathize so much with those people who are suffering? What is it about them that makes you care so much?

Ms. MIA: It's just sad. It's sad seeing those people out there who stay--they don't have blankets.

CURRY: And is it too much to know this at your age?

Ms. MIA: No. Because you have the opportunity to change the world if you want to.

CURRY: So you want game changers, rule changers, future changers.

Ms. CHAN: Or be a part of the solution. This is a life sport. This is--this is a dream.

CURRY: A dream now changing young lives with the possibility of changing so many more.