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Global Citizen

Global Citizenship Education Through Curriculum-as-Relations

Written by Patrick Quigley

Introduction to global citizenship education through curriculum-as-relations         


This short article will discuss global citizenship education through curriculum-as-relations. It will culminate with ten tips on how curricula can be tweaked to promote global citizenship education. The article concludes with ten global citizenship curricular activities.



Introduction to global citizenship education curriculum and children


Today, there are more than 2.2 billion children in the world. Two billion of these live in developing countries like India, Bangladesh, Pakistan and Myanmar. Children make up more than a quarter of the global population. They must be recognized as an enormous minority with special privileges and rights. 

Children represent a vulnerable portion of society. Their vulnerability may be seen especially in developing nations. They are often exploited and do not receive basic education or healthcare. The future of the planet depends on these 2.2 billion children. The future of children depends on the types of citizen education. The future also depends on global citizenship education through curriculum-as-relations. 


Global citizenship education curriculum and curriculum creators.

When designing a school curriculum, it is important to remember the four following ideas. 

  1. Children are the future leaders and citizens of the world. Their opinions are important. We should listen to them attentively and enthusiastically.
  2. Children should study how to behave in an ethical, moralistic, and conscientious manner. This will help them contribute positively to a better and more prosperous society. This includes both local and global.
  3. Children have the right to participate, and they have a unique and valued voice. This voice should be listened to carefully and with impunity.
  4. Children have the right to be protected. A child is defined as anyone under the age of eighteen years.


Global Citizen Education Definition.

“I believe we can speak with one voice” – Narendra Modi



Global Citizen


What is global citizenship education? 

The world is becoming more and more globalized. The World Health Organization (WHO) and the World Economic Forum (WEF) are pushing for one world government. This will include a planet of global citizens with a global digital identity. By now we are all aware that as global citizens we have civic duties to the planet. Our actions as individuals amount to the actions of many, the actions of a global population. 

Leaders and teachers see the need for global citizen education. So do governments, Non-Government Organizations (NGOs) and charities.

But what is global citizen education? The most common global citizen education definition is simple. All individuals have civic responsibilities to the planet as a whole. This means that we all have a responsibility to Mother Earth. This supersedes our countries or local communities. 

We all have an individual and yet collective responsibility. We are all responsible in our own way for global warming and sustainability. We are also responsible for international peace. And the maintenance of social and ecological harmony on Earth. 

The notion of borders and countries is a hypothetical one. Borders only exist on maps but in reality, planet Earth is a singular entity. It existed before the arrival of living things and humanity and will continue to exist should life cease to exist on the planet. 


“Imagine there´s no countries….it`s easy if you try….no hell below us, above us only sky…”  – John Lennon





Global citizen education helps expand personal horizons. These can in turn effect change in a more meaningful sense on both a micro and macro level. Ideas like this are understandable to learners of all ages. They can be introduced from a very early age. Even as early as elementary school. It is an excellent idea to introduce topics like this to children to get them used to global concepts. 

Ideas like Reduce, Reuse, recycle are understandable in the early years: Yet their effect on the ecosystem can be lasting and very beneficial. Respect for the planet and global citizenship are equally understandable to young children. We need to make sustainable choices. We need to remember that our actions today pave the way for future generations. 





It is never too early to be aware that each individual’s actions contribute to the overall good of humanity. As individuals and as societies we need to develop more sustainably and learn how to respect the planet and its inhabitants. Sustainability goals reflect on overall peace and satisfaction in society. 

We live in a consumerist world and a disposable culture. But this was not always so. Corporations and companies have used psychological techniques to make us consumers. This is wreaking havoc on the environment and attitudes and values need to change before we can become a more sustainable global community.


Citizenship education and global citizenship education in India





Citizenship education and global citizenship education in India

Provides the skills and knowledge needed to build a continuous flow of new citizens. These new Indian citizens participate and engage in the formation of a better and more civilized society. Here the individual takes responsibility for society as a whole. 

There is an old adage which states that “No person is an island¨. India is the second most populated country on Earth. Global citizenship education in India will play a major part in international Global citizenship education.

Humans are social beings, and we need each other to thrive. There is another old saying which states that “It takes a village to raise a child.” These days, that saying would be more appropriately amended to “It takes a global citizen to raise children.” Citizens have responsibility. They need to learn that collaboration, teamwork, and cooperation are important skills. They need to be aware that tolerance and compassion are also important concepts. 

The world is a very diverse place and empathy for other citizens is vital. India is also a very diverse multicultural place which is the main reason why global citizenship education in India is so important. A nation of Hindus, Muslims, Sikhs, Christians, Jains, and other religions needs to practice tolerance and love for all humanity. Without successful global citizenship education in India, we cannot hope for successful global citizenship education worldwide.



In India


Global citizenship education in India and global citizenship education. These concepts relate to tolerance and respect for community, environment, gender, sexuality, race, religion, and creed. Tolerant citizens make tolerant communities. Tolerant communities in turn create peaceful societies. Peaceful and educated societies create peaceful nations. Peace-loving nations can contribute to creating a peaceful planet. Every action has a knock-on effect. 

Positive ideals can be integrated at an early age by the teaching of global citizenship education through curriculum-as-relations. This can contribute to global harmony and peace. It is a win, win situations for all occupants. As well as all living creatures on the planet. Peace creates peace. Tolerance creates tolerance.


How to implement global citizenship education through curriculum-as-relations.


Ten Tips for Teachers, parents, and leaders to teach global citizen education. 


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 1

Collaboratively teach democratic principles in small circles. A good idea is for teachers and educators to make school rules together with pupils. This should be done without prejudice or predetermination of what rules will be created. Students who take responsibility for creating rules understand rules better and are less likely to break them. Parents can also start the ball rolling at home. Students are more likely to follow rules that have been democratically agreed upon by themselves and their peers. People who design curricula are more inclined to remain within the boundaries they define.


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 2





Support students when they want to respectfully amend rules. This will positively affect the lives of themselves and their peers. This encourages democratic principles. It has immense value for students and teachers alike.


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 3

Teach students the joy of giving. Teach them to give back to their community. Conduct charitable things like fundraising drives, street, and park clean-ups. Help senior citizens, clean graffiti, and do other beneficial things for the neighborhood. 


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 4





Get involved in projects that emphasize the importance of living in harmony with our ecosystem and local environment. Again, clean-ups and active participation in community projects are extremely worthwhile. This applies in both the short and long term.


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 5

Study relevant literature and historical figures who played a part in the betterment of society. Analyze these figures and their virtues. Highlight the importance of emulating amazing men and women like Mahatma Gandhi and Mother Teresa.


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 6

Teach students about citizenship. It is never too early to start. Understanding global citizenship starts at a young age and its merits continue into adulthood. Children who learn to respect the planet grow into adults with the same values and these values can be passed onto future generations.


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 7





Study how to have respectful relationships with peers and family members. Encourage, evaluate, emulate, and reward students who practice respectful relationships.


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 8

Study conflict resolution at the micro and macro level. Teach students how to respect the individual liberties of others and why this is crucial for social harmony.


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 9

Study respecting the property of peers and why this is important. Morals can be studied in literature or in civic responsibility modules. Respect for individual property is important on macro and micro levels. 


Global Citizenship Curriculum Tip 10





Encourage students to take responsibility for their actions. Encourage them to take part in things like representative councils. This is where collaboration and democratic principles flourish.



The future depends on the children. The children depend on global citizenship education through curriculum-as-relations. Let´s get the ball rolling for a better more sustainable planet Earth where all beings live in peace and harmony.




Patrick is from Ireland and has been teaching for the last twenty years. He has worked in Malaysia, Myanmar, India, Spain, Japan, Taiwan, Oman, and Saudi Arabia. He has a degree in English Literature and Applied Psychology. Patrick loves travelling and learning about new cultures. He is passionate about motivating students to maximize their creative potential.

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Chris is from Devon, in the south of England. He has been teaching English as a foreign language for over six years and has taught in China, the UK, Hungary and Spain. He has a background in Music and studied Composition at the RSAMD in Glasgow, Trinity Laban in London and at the University of York. After finishing his master’s at York, he travelled to China to teach and fell in love with it. He has been teaching ever since.

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