In this project the children design and carry out a fair trade audit of the school.
It is expected that children will have a sound understanding of what Fairtrade is and its benefits to producers and their communities in the developing world before undertaking this task.
This lesson plan links to Curriculum aims in English and Maths and non-statutory programmes of study in PSHE and Citizenship.
To practice data collecting skills.
To have designed and carried out a survey of Fairtrade in the school.
As a class, decide on 9 terms related to Fairtrade. Students then draw a 3x3 grid and write the words in at random. The teacher reads a definition out and students cross off the word it refers to. When students have crossed off 3 words in a row they shout bingo and read back the words and their definitions. Invite children to tell you what fairtrade is and how it has helped people in poorer countries.
An alternative activity for Year 5-6 could be to provide cut-up text of one of the producer stories.
In groups students have to put it back together again in the correct order. This can precipitate a review of fairtrade; what it is and its benefits to communities in poorer countries.
Explain that children are going to develop a Fairtrade questionnaire in groups (or as a class) and research other people’s ideas and opinions of Fairtrade. Elicit some ideas for the different stages of this research task.
1. Who are we going to ask? (target audience)
2. What do we want to know? (what type of data are we collecting?)
3. How are we going to ask it? (methods of data collecting)
4. How are we going to display our results? (data recording)
In pairs children come up with ideas for different target audiences. For example, the general public, the school community (inc. governors, teachers, parents, grandparents) different year groups or key stages, secondary schools, a street or part of a local area, shoppers, religious groups, places of worship, or businesses.
As a class, make a list of the information you want to find out concerning people’s attitudes to Fairtrade.
• Do people know what Fairtrade is?
• Do people care about Fairtrade? If so, why?
• Do people buy Fairtrade items?
• Do children care more than adults?
• Is Fairtrade more important to people than other issues such as climate change?
• Do people understand the links between Fairtrade and poverty?
• Do people know the difference which Fairtrade makes?
Introduce the idea of qualitative and quantitative data to older children. Qualitative data gives us information on people’s opinions and thoughts about a subject. Quantitative data provides numbers and statistics. “I think that Fairtrade is really important because it helps farmers in the developing world to get a fair price for their goods” is a piece of qualitative information. 10 out of 20 people (50%) believe that Fairtrade is a good idea is a piece of quantitative data.
Elicit ideas of the types of question which can be asked.
• Yes or no questions:
Do you care about Fairtrade? (Yes/No)
• Multiple Choice:
How much do you care about Fairtrade? (A lot, A bit, A little, Not at all)
• Ranking questions:
Put these issues in the order of those which matter most to you. Fairtrade, climate change, racism, women’s rights.
• Questions which ask people for their opinion:
Why do you care about Fairtrade?
Either pick one target audience for the whole class (the school for example) or ask each group to write a questionnaire for a different target audience.
In their groups the children decide on what questions they are going to ask, ensuring that they use different types. Through talking about different types of questions to ask, pupils will gain a greater understanding of how to elicit information from people.
Before beginning the data collection part of the task, ask each group to make predictions of how they think people will respond to their questions. Which target group/part of the target group do they expect to be most knowledgeable about Fairtrade? Do they think that people buy a lot of Fairtrade goods?
Alternatively, for younger children the traffic light system can be used. Give each student a piece of red, green and yellow paper. Read out the series of statements below (or write your own) to which students raise green if they agree/think the answer is yes; red if they disagree/the answer is no and yellow if they’re not sure/don’t know the answer.
1. Most people will know what Fairtrade is.
2. Not everyone will be supportive of Fairtrade.
3. More young people than old people will buy Fairtrade products.
4. Not many people will know about the ways in which Fairtrade helps communities.
5. Some people will refuse to buy Fairtrade products because they think they are too expensive.
Record these predictions somewhere in the classroom to compare later on.
After children have collected their information, discuss what they are going to do with the data and how they will record it. Initially they can split the information into quantitative and qualitative data. Recording quantitative information could include work with fractions and percentages. Children can draw graphs and pie-charts, either by hand, or as part of an ICT lesson. In groups ask the children to write down what they have learned from the responses they have received to each of their questions using the data as evidence.
When the class have finished their reports, they present what they have learnt to the class. Then look back at the predictions the children made before beginning the project. How many of them were correct?
Sit in a circle and pass around a Fairtrade item. Only the person holding that item can contribute to the discussion at that time. They then choose who to pass it onto. Ask the class what they have learnt about Fairtrade through doing this project. What have they learnt about other people’s attitudes to Fairtrade? Has it surprised them?
Pupils could begin a Fairtrade campaign in the school and then carry out the survey again at the end to see whether their activities have changed attitudes in the school.