Many schools teach kids about free trade. But how many put it in context? How many allow students to explore the complex connections between trade, economics, politics, human rights, and the environment? How many social studies classes encourage learners to question whether there is a better way? How many lesson plans cover fair trade, in addition to free trade?

Most teachers would love to make these changes to their curriculum, but it’s hard to know where to start when many educated adults don’t even have a good grasp of the complexities of trade. That is why here at Creative Change, we’re excited to announce a great opportunity from Fair Trade Campaigns.

Fair Trade Campaigns is a grassroots movement mobilizing thousands of conscious consumers and fair trade advocates on campuses and in communities across the U.S. They offer designation programs for towns, colleges, K-12 schools, and congregations seeking to embed fair trade purchasing and principles.

In partnership with Creative Change, Fair Trade Campaigns has developed a series of lesson plans to help educators expand the scope of their middle and high school classrooms with an interdisciplinary exploration of fair trade. There are four distinct lessons, covering four subject areas:

  • Changing the Rules of the Global Economy: An Introduction to Fair Trade
  • Gender Equity and Fair Trade
  • Child Labor and Fair Trade
  • Environmental Sustainability and Fair Trade

Each lesson includes several activities, which can be completed individually or as a full, sequential lesson. The lessons come with an accompanying Educator’s Guide which includes background information for teachers and guidance on effective instructional strategies. These are differentiated lesson plans for grades 6-12, which are aligned with common core standards in English and Language Arts and applicable for a variety of subject areas. Teachers have used the lessons in subjects including English, social studies, biology, environmental science, and business.

These lessons take economics beyond static concepts to regurgitate on a test. They empower learners to see economic policy and consumer choice as powerful tools that can change lives, across the world or even in their own neighborhood.

Because Fair Trade Campaigns wants all teachers and students to benefit from these lesson plans, they are generously offering them for free! Learn more and download the lessons here.

It was truly an honor for us to work with Fair Trade Campaigns, as their goals exemplify the philosophy of education CCES is founded on. If your organization would like to discuss possible opportunities to work together, then start the conversation today.

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