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This lesson is part of UNICEF’s Heat Up Over Climate Change action pack. The objective of this lesson is to highlight the situation that low-lying countries are facing with rising sea-levels caused by climate change. Students will be engaged in their learning through this interactive game. The Heat up pack can be used by peer educators, youth workers and teachers and is designed to get your group thinking about and taking action on climate change. It offers a variety of activities focused on background information, answering “big questions” and student action plans.
Time Required: 30 minutes
-To highlight the situation low-lying countries are facing with rising sea-levels caused by climate change.
What to do:
1)Split your group into teams of around three or four.
2)Give each team a sheet of newspaper with a country name written on it.
3)Ask each team to spread out around the room. Explain that the floor represents water, and the newspaper represents the country.
4)Explain the rules of the game: to stay in the game every member of the team must be on the sheet of newspaper when the music is playing. When the music stops you will shout out ‘rising sea levels’, the team then gets off the newspaper, folds it in half and all try and get back on when the music starts. As the available space reduces, the groups need to be more creative in how they occupy their shrinking island.
5)Start the game and keep going until only one team remains.
6)Get your group together – the discussion is the most important bit of this activity.
-What do you think the activity was trying to demonstrate?
Many low-lying countries are very susceptible to rising sea levels. Countries like Bangladesh and Tuvalu have already experienced severe flooding. Some experts even think that countries like the Maldives could disappear because of rising sea levels caused by climate change.
-How do you think rising sea levels affect the most vulnerable people in these countries?
Flooding can lead to people being forced to leave their homes; schools, hospitals and homes can be destroyed; and it can lead to an increase in cases of water-borne diseases like cholera.
-What do rising sea levels have to do with climate change?
Because of rising temperatures, the oceans get warmer and expand, and polar ice caps also melt.
-Can you imagine what it would be like to live in a community threatened by rising sea levels. How might you feel? What do you think communities do to cope with these situations?
-Music -7 sheets of newspaper