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18 April 2014
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    Using the 'Community Action' chat

    This video chat looks at how students can get involved in local community activities.

    The story introduces learning about community action in a school situation and covers the QCA schemes of work: Unit 0.1: Citizenship - What's it all about? Unit 8: Leisure and sport in the local community, Unit 14 :Developing skills of democratic participation, Unit 18: Developing your school grounds.

    How to use with a whole class with access to computers

    This video features interviews with Camilla, who has recently won the award 'Young Volunteer of the Year'. Camilla talks about what her activities have meant for her and people in the community.

    Ask students to watch the video online, as many times as they wish, making notes in their books as they get to know Camilla: These questions may help: How did Camilla help her community? What did she get out of it? When all students are familiar with the contents of the video, invite them to discuss it with the person sitting next to them. Question 7 above may be a useful prompt for this discussion. The whole class could then share their responses to the video and the question, and begin to think about what kinds of community action they could be doing.

    When students have finished, ask them to list all the forms of community action they can think of. Use their lists to plan an outside visit to a local playground or area of unused land. During the visit, discuss how this area could be improved.

    Useful information on setting up community projects can be found on the websites mentioned in the video chat.

    TimeBank works with the BBC to inspire people to give time to their local communities. For more information visit

    Encourage students to explore active citizenship with the Get Involved section. There are examples of citizenship action by other schools. They can 'Go off on a tangent!' with audio and video clips, find out more on 'Get the lowdown' or test themselves with the quizzes. Students who finish early can add their own ideas about community action on the messageboard.

    How to use with only small number of computers

    Use the video on a carousel basis when other groups are planning their own community actions. Or introduce the interviewee and her areas of interest (helping children with learning difficulties, so that all groups can work on developing their ideas to these while one member from each group views the video and reports back on it.

    Suggestions for using with an interactive whiteboard

    Project the video on the board. Stop after each question to ask for immediate responses from the students and record these on the board. At the end of the video, return to the frozen frames of each question and assess what students have learned: Ask the class:

    1. What award did Camilla win?
    2. How did she help?
    3. What did she say she gained personally?
    4. How did she say this helped the community?

    Suggestions for using the site for planning lessons

    If possible, project the video on a screen and follow any of the activities above. Otherwise, print out a frame showing the interviewees talking and introduce them by name and community action to the class this way.

    Suggested questions to encourage class discussion

    1. Where does Camilla volunteer?
    2. When does Camilla help?
    3. How did she get involved?
    4. What award did she win?

    Suggestions for extension work for more able students

    1. Reproduce the interview in another format, like a cartoon or written transcript. Extend the interview adding more questions of your own and how you think Camilla would answer them.

    2. Ask around your class or school to find out who has been involved in community action recently. Write questions for an interview, based on the video you watched. Carry out and record interviews with your young community activists, using video or a digital camera so you have a tangible output to share with others.

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