The Global Goals: get involved!

Often when we take action, it can feel isolated and insignificant. With all of the major and complex problems in the world, it’s disheartening to think that our efforts barely scratch the surface. The UN Global Goals remind us that we are contributing to a global effort and that we are, in fact, making a difference in collaboration with others.

What are the Global Goals?

The Global Goals, also known as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), are seventeen bold and interconnected targets agreed upon by the United Nations (UN) to be achieved by 2030. In 2015, the one hundred and ninety-three nations of the UN pledged commitment to these goals. For more information about each one, visit the official website.

“These Goals are a blueprint for a better future. Now we must use the goals to transform the world. We will do that through partnership and through commitment. We must leave no-one behind.”

Ban Ki-moon, former UN Secretary-General

The role of education

As stated in the video above, the achievement of these ambitious goals will only be possible through a global effort and by getting everyone involved. Teachers and schools have a role to play. We must raise awareness of the issues, promote the SDGs and keep the discussions going. The younger generation will be vital to the agenda’s long-term, sustainable success.

Teachers and schools have a role to play. We must raise awareness of the issues, promote the #SDGs and keep the discussions going. Click To Tweet

Get involved

The World’s Largest Lesson helps teachers to introduce the SDGs in class or in an assembly. The website provides many ideas and resources.

To delve a little deeper through guided inquiry, you are welcome to use this HyperDoc that I created. After you have made a copy, you can adapt and then assign to your students. The slides include relevant links that make good starting points for their online research.

  • Curricular links

The Global Goals should not be an addition to our already packed timetable. Instead, we should look for natural connections between the goals and the units that we already teach (if connections are not authentic, don’t force them). In our planning meetings, we consider these connections and purposely plan learning engagements that explore them. The Global Goals can add a meaningful context to units, inspire action and support the development of international mindedness.

  • Become a #TeachSDGs Ambassador

To gain official recognition for the work that you do as a teacher, consider becoming an Ambassador. Applications for the 2019 cohort will open in October 2018. Click here for more information.

  • Twitter

There are many active accounts and hashtags on Twitter that relate to the Global Goals. These are great for providing updates and inspiration. To name just a few, I encourage you to check out @GlobalGoalsUN, @TheWorldsLesson, @TheGlobalGoals, @TeachSDGs, #GlobalGoals, #worldslargestlesson, #TeachSDGs. To see updates relating to specific goals, search #SDG1, #SDG2, etc. Include these hashtags when you share your own action! Also, connect with my colleague @chrisgadbury (also a #TeachSDGs Ambassador). His artistic work includes fantastic infographics and picture books that relate to the Global Goals.

  • Connect with us

Screen Shot 2018-04-15 at 7.36.34 PM

Thanks to #TeachSDGs Ambassador Guy Hamlin, we have another one of these large, high-quality posters to share. We are hoping to connect with another class to collaborate on SDGs-related projects. Please let me know if you would like to connect with our class in Hong Kong. We will gladly send one of these posters to you. It is through these connections, collaboration and ongoing discussions that we can raise awareness and build understanding around these issues.

These targets are so bold and ambitious that everyone’s participation is needed. We must do what we can on an individual and local level in order to contribute to the wider effort. In particular, schools hold a key role in educating the next generation of problem-solvers and innovators.

“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world.”

Nelson Mandela

Please leave a comment below to share how you, your students and your school are getting involved. As always, let me know if I can help in any way.

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  1. Hi,
    My Eco Committee are working hard to learn more about the goals and find ways in which we can help.
    We would love to connect and share our ideas and magpie some fresh ideas.

    1. Hi Stacey,

      That sounds great! Well done to your committee and I wish you luck! We’re very happy to make more connections in order to gather new ideas and learn from new people. Email me or tweet @AhillAdam. Let’s chat about what we can do together with our students.



  2. Great post, Adam. I had a look at your SDG template as well. I’m sure other teachers will find it very useful. So good of you to share.

    1. Hi Norah,

      Thanks for the feedback! I’m always happy to share what I do. I hope others find it useful too. More importantly, though, I hope more and more kids will learn about these goals and contribute to the global effort of achieving them.

      Thanks again!


      1. We all need to do what we can to achieve the goals, Adam. I wonder how close we’ll get by 2030. It doesn’t seem far away now.

        1. Hi Norah,

          I agree! It’ll be 2030 before we know it and these goals are extremely ambitious! Let’s hope that we can make a massive difference, even if we’re unable to solve the problems completely.


  3. Would love to connect with you! My grade six students in Florida have spent the year studying the SDGs. They have created inquiry projects, done research, spread awareness, volunteered in the community, and started action projects related to various goals. They have become very passionate about this and would love to hear what your students are doing!

    1. Hi Julie,

      This sounds fantastic! Your students are excellent SDGs ambassadors! It sounds like my students could learn a lot from yours and, hopefully, vice versa. It would be great to connect! You can use the ‘contact’ page on here to email me privately. We can discuss some collaborative opportunities and I’ll send a poster as soon as I have your address.



  4. My year 6 class in Sydney will be introduced to the global goals in our sharing the planet unit starting in 2 weeks.
    I have looked at them with a previous year 6 class.
    I would love to connect with your class in Hong Kong. Our central idea is that environmental issues cause conflict in our world and would love to hear your students perspective on issues in Hong Kong.

    1. Hi,

      What an interesting central idea! You could very easily link some Global Goals. In particular, you could discuss goal 17 which is the need for global partnerships and collaboration. The goals will only be reached if we work together. Conflicts stand in the way of this. And, obviously, the environmental goals connect authentically as well. Interesting!

      We’d love to connect with you. If you email me with your school address and some possible project ideas, I’ll get back to you and send the poster your way. You can use the ‘contact’ page on here to reach me privately.



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