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Children Helping Children

Ted Wragg explains how the Children Helping Children campaign gives you and your pupils a chance to make a difference to the lives of children devastated by war, to become global citizens and make an impact on the world

In Afghanistan parents and their children are desperate for regular life to return, and the routine they long for is the normal school day. Under the Taliban, many of the simple things we take for granted, including flying kites, were banned. There is a huge demand for the classroom basics - paper, pencils, textbooks, maps and training for teachers. By raising funds and developing knowledge about the region, teachers and children in the UK can help make education happen in Afghanistan. If you take an active part, you'll never forget it.

Every week for the next few months I'll be making suggestions about what schools can do to relate fundraising to learning. First and foremost, Britain's children will be sharing their common humanity, expressing themselves as human beings who care about others. There can be few more important assignments for education in the 21st century. This is also an excellent opportunity to implement the citizenship curriculum - being an active citizen, volunteering, developing political literacy. Pupils will discover first-hand how decisive action can be taken in modern society and how societies work.

In addition there are great opportunities to develop reading and writing. Even those reluctant to put pen to paper are more likely to enthuse if they are motivated. And what could be more motivating than doing something positive for other children who desperately need their help?

There will be ideas to explore in school assemblies (primary and secondary), in circle time or in tutor group periods. Why are the Afghan children so poor? What can richer nations do to help? Geography and history lessons can focus on Afghanistan and its stark climate and conditions, its religion and beliefs, the historic trade routes, its meagre economy, how it might change.

I have no monopoly on inspiration, so over the next few weeks we shall also feature creative insights from schools with ideas. And who knows what children themselves will be able to dream up? I can't wait to see.

If you have an idea about using the appeal to help teach the curriculum, raising funds, or what can be done in Afghanistan email Ted Wragg at afghanappeal@tes.co.uk or write to Ted Wragg, Children Helping Children Appeal, TES, Admiral House, 66-68 East Smithfield, London E1W 1BX

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