Demonstrating Leadership: Symposium & Rising to the Challenge

photo-10-11-12-13-14-15-16-17-18-19-20-21-22-23-24-25-26-27-28-29-30-31-32-33-34-35-36-37-38-39-40-41-42-43-44-45-46A global citizen is someone who can identify problems in the world and come up with creative solutions that integrate knowledge from various sources of information.  At Hamlin, students use their skills in Science, Health, Math, Social Studies, Spanish, Technology and English to write  and speak publicly about issues facing our world both near and far.

The 6th grade Symposium is modeled after the Greeks and involves four weeks of intensive study.  Students are able to select their own topic, do research, plan as a team, and deliver short formal presentations at the Century Club in San Francisco.  Students share their knowledge via Ted Talks, songs, spoken word poetry, public service announcements, and short documentary videos.  This year the topics covered: Human Trafficking, the U.S. Embargo Against Cuba, Propaganda, Racial Privilege, Gender Privilege, Population Growth in Modern Day China, Migrant Farm Workers, The Columbian Flower Industry, and United States Factories in China, among others.

“Symposium is a different way to research and explore, a chance to go deeper into the topic and work towards a bigger goal towards the end of the year.  We were able to get creative with the project and apply history learning to contemporary issues.”-Hamlin 6th grader

“Symposium is a powerful culminating activity where the girls can unite their understanding and studies, integrating various subjects.  It was amazing to see the girls expressing their knowledge through such a dynamic range of forms.”-Hamlin Parent

photo-10-11-12-13-14-15-16-17-18-19-20-21-22-23-24-25-26-27-28-29-30-31-32-33-34-35-36-37-38-39-40-41-42-43-44-45-46-47The 7th graders immerse themselves in Rising to the Challenge (RTC).  They have the opportunity to choose their own topics, do in-depth research, then share their findings, providing short and long term solutions to various problems.  Most teams use social media to generate awareness, including websites, blogs, Twitter, and Instagram.  This year RTC addressed the following topics, among others: Homelessness in San Francisco, Animal Abuse in the Entertainment Industry, The United States Trade Deficit, Improving Public Access to Quality Food, The Effects of Social Media, Cyber Security and Digital Privacy, Body Image and Media, Clean Energy, The California Drought, Genetic Modification Awareness, Maternal Mortality, Bullying Awareness, LGBT Youth, and Family Homelessness.

“RTC opened my eyes to the homeless and the fact that they are people.  We understand their humanity more now.  I feel less judgmental, I’ve lost the label I had for them, I know them as individuals now.”-Hamlin 7th grader

“I’m blown away, speechless, these girls are tackling real world problems with creative solutions and so much passion, this is the future of leadership.”-Hamlin Parent

RTC website example from United States Trade Deficit:

RTC blog article example from Spotlight SF Homeless:

RTC Twitter Page example from Protech Yourself:

Student Interview about RTC:

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