In this weekly series, OneWorld Now! Leadership Facilitator (and program alumna) Andrea Vielma breaks down what happens in an OneWorld Now! leadership workshop. Each week, students come together for an experiential workshop to explore a new topic and develop skills like critical thinking, social-emotional learning, empathy and more. Sessions are based on OneWorld Now!’s unique global leadership curriculum.
We continued the global knowledge activity by analyzing our stereotypes and perceptions of the world. Students were divided into ten groups. Each group received a map and an assortment of colored stickers. Each sticker represented a different category:
Students were prompted to label the top six countries with the best statistics (e.g. highest number of women in public office; lowest rate of infant mortality) in each category and then to compare their ranking with other groups.
After groups completed their group maps, we gave them black stickers to use to interact with other group’s maps. A black sticker signified that one group disagreed with a particular label on another group’s map.
The United States ranked 56th for infant mortality rates.
The United States ranked 75th.
The United States ranked 49th for press freedom. This index reflects “the attitudes and intentions of governments towards media freedom in the medium or long term”.
This index compares the budget on education as a percent of each country’s GDP. From biggest spenders downward, here’s the list:
The United States ranked 63rd.
“I was surprised by the number of women representatives in Africa, I had not expected such high numbers.” – Nicky
“There were a lot of countries listed that I’ve never heard of before.” – Anonymous Student
“That’s because the US has this perception of Africa as underdeveloped and third world, and we’re such a big country that we don’t pay attention to the smaller ones.” – Warda & Iman
“The US likes to paint itself as the greatest country, but we barely ranked top 10 or 20 in the categories assigned.” – Sofia
Side note: Where does the United States rank near the top? For starters, we have one of the highest rates of incarceration in the world. The United States also pours a lot of our budget into military expenditures, ranking #1 worldwide.
“To be aware of countries that are less significant in the media.” – Zion.
“Wow, I don’t know anything, but I thought I did. I need to question what I’m learning in school” – Sofia
“War always goes in the media, but we never hear about stuff like education budgets.” -Osman.
“It’s humbly accepting that the world is bigger than you — and not being defeated by this fact but using this as a fuel to drive you towards learning more.” – Cody