about the author
Annie Emberland has worked in WFP’s Washington office since 2013. Previously, she worked as a production assistant for NBC Nightly News, and earlier as an environmental reporter in Maryland, US.
Getting classrooms involved in the fight against hunger is important to WFP. For teachers who want to start teaching about hunger and food assistance, it can be tough to know where to start. Our website has several great options for crafting a lesson.
For teachers, approaching new topics in the classroom can be a challenge. How do you engage students and encourage them to think critically about the issue? WFP’s website is a vast resource for teachers looking to kick off a lesson on hunger and food aid. Here’s a few examples to get started.
Beginning the lesson can be the hardest part. What exactly does hunger mean? This page offers an introductory lesson on the issue and several potential discussion points. Students will learn how to define hunger, where many of the world’s hungry live, some potential causes and more.
One thing that will become obvious early on in any hunger lesson is that there is a great deal of hunger-specific vocabulary. Available as a link from the main hunger page, WFP’s hunger glossary offers definitions of frequently used words related to hunger.
Once students have an understanding as to where the hungry live, a visual representation may help to highlight the most vulnerable regions and help to display WFP operations there. This interactive map color-codes countries worldwide based on percentages of undernourished people. Clicking on a country will show details on the hunger situation there, WFP operations and stories relevant to the country.
One of the many great things about these lesson plans is that they have been developed by educators specifically for the purpose of teaching hunger. They range in topic and difficulty, and most are specific to a grade range in schools. For example, this lesson entitled “The Hunger Tree,” geared towards grades 4 to 6, asks students to think critically about hunger. After a brief lesson on hunger, students are then asked to diagram a tree to show the causes of hunger on the roots, the ways hunger affects society on the trunk and the possible actions on the leaves.
What student doesn’t like to watch a video in class? WFP’s YouTube page has several fun and interesting videos that help create a visual representation of operations around the world and why they’re important. For example, this video explains just how much bread WFP is distributing at Zaatari refugee camp in Jordan, and this video explains the importance of good nutrition.
Are you using WFP resources to teach about hunger and food aid at your school? Email firstname.lastname@example.org to let us know how.