GLOBAL CONNECTIONS INQUIRY

Discovering People and Processes

DAY 2 ACTIVITY

15-20 Minutes

  • Learn about the process of making everyday items

  • Create a draft of your “My Global Connections Infographic

THIS WEEK

We’re thinking about

the question: 

“How do the things we use connect us to people and places around the world?”

Your challenge this week is to create a “My Global Connections Infographic” showing how the everyday items you consume connect you to distant people and places.

Let's Get Started!

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Look back at the list of items you found in your home. Did you find a pencil? A phone? A T-shirt? 

The items you found went through a process, starting with raw materials and ending up as a product you consume. 

Look at the images on the left. They show an example of a process that starts with raw materials and ends when you use the product. The steps of this process are:

  • Take: Get raw material from the earth

  • Make: Make it into something new

  • Send: Get it to people who use it

  • Use: Buy or use it

raw materials:

 

the basic materials used to make other products

Let’s explore a process like the one described above.

Chocolate is a treat enjoyed by many of us. Though we may buy it at a local store, neatly wrapped and ready to eat, it has traveled a great distance to get to us.

 

Along the way, chocolate goes through a long process involving many people before it reaches our shelves.

One of the main ingredients in chocolate is the seed of the cacao tree. 

 

These seeds are contained in the pods, or fruits, that grow on the trees.

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Cacao trees grow in tropical locations with warm, wet climates.

 

Click on the map to the left to make it bigger. The colors show the countries where cacao trees grow.

 

Notice that these countries are mostly located on the continents of South America, Africa, and Asia (with a few spots in the southern part of North America). All of these spots are very far from your local store!

So, what is the process that brings chocolate to our local store?

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Step 1: Take

 

When the pod is ripe, a farmer cuts down the pod with a sharp blade and opens it. Inside the cacao pod are white, mushy seeds.

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Step 2: Make

 

The seeds are put in boxes so they get very hot. This stops the seeds from growing. They turn from white to brown. 

 

Next, the seeds are spread out and dried. At this point, we call them cocoa beans.

 

Then, the beans are roasted at a high heat. They are taken from the shells, ground into a powder that will be heated and cooled to make a “mass” that will be turned into chocolate.

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Step 3: Send

It is shipped to factories all over the world to make it into chocolate.

 

Think of all the people who help make chocolate, from the people who load and unload the ships, to the people in the factories!

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Step 4: Use

 

Then we buy and eat it!

“My Fairtrade Adventure” video

from Fairtrade Foundation

Pulling it all together:

 

  • Watch this video to learn more about the people and places behind the chocolate so many people enjoy!

Look!

 

Take another look around you and notice all the objects you use. 

Ask yourself:

  • How do these connect you to people and places far away?

  • Are there connections you already knew about?

  • Are there connections that surprised you?

  • Are there any objects or items you’d like to add to the list of items you created?

Your challenge this week: Create a “My Global Connections Infographic” showing the way you are connected to people and places through the items you consume.

 

Today, you will use the information you’ve collected about your items to start creating your infographic.

infographic:

 

a visual that uses images and words to communicate information quickly and clearly

Today, you will only create a sketch of your infographic using pencil.

Your infographic will show how the everyday items you consume connect you to distant people and places.

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Let’s look at another student’s draft to give us ideas.

  • Notice how this infographic shows everyday items that a student consumes. 

  • Notice how this infographic shows the places in the world where those items came from.

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Now it’s your turn to create a sketch of your “My Global Connections Infographic.” 

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Review your goals: 

  • I will represent my items using symbols and words

  • I will create a chart describing which items come from which continent

  • I will write statements that demonstrate my learning about global connections

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On a piece of paper, create a sketch in pencil of your “My Global Connections Infographic” (or use the “Infographic Template” handout if you like).

Once you've created your sketch, write down your thoughts and ideas after reading the sentence starters below:

  • My items connect me to people and places because…

  • Learning about these connections makes me wonder…

  • I noticed some similar things about my items, like...

    • For example: Do you notice that certain types of items come from certain places? Do you notice that certain continents provide more items than others? Are there any other patterns you notice in the information you found?

Remember to save your sketch! You’ll use it to create your final “My Global Connections Infographic.”

Read: “The Impact of Globalization on the Physical and Human Characteristics of Communities” article 

  • List 2 ways that globalization can change a physical place or how people in a place live.

Ready for Day 3?

On day 3, you will make a plan to improve your “My Global Connections Infographic.”