Beans, Fairy-tales and Global Learning

When my daughter came home from her FYOS classroom of late with a ‘beanstalk’ (read, germinated broad bean in a cup) as part of the class exploration into the term theme of fairy tales, no doubt her mind was full of giants and magic and boys named Jack. I was complicit in the death of that bean stalk before long, my garden operating on a principle of thrive or die. But once spring arrived, the dead beanstalk not forgotten, at her insistence we set about clearing a patch of weeds, spreading some fresh compost from the heap and trying our hand at another set of beanstalks.

If you’ve taken part in one of our professional development sessions of late, you’ve no doubt heard from one of the education officers that global education is not another subject to teach but a perspective we take. Not something to teach about, but a way through what we teach. I think my daughter’s fairy tale bean stalk is a great example. We’ve set about our experiment in growing food in our own backyard and it catalyses talk about rain, farming, work, reward, food, home, wealth, poverty, waste, and so much more. And all motivated at least in part by a pre-primary class with a teacher who hears a fairy tale and sees infinite possibilities for global learning.