Did you know that Four Corners Montessori Academy has a Montessori Model United Nations team? And, did you know that 10 upper elementary and middle school students went to the Montessori Model UN 2019 Conference located in New York City last week to represent FCMA?
Read on to learn about the amazing things happening with the Montessori Model UN program and Four Corners Montessori Academy.
Maria Montessori felt that children hold the key to finding peaceful solutions for the benefit of our world. Students at Four Corners got to experience just that during their Montessori Model UN conference.
“Montessori Model United Nations is an exceptional opportunity for our Montessori students to emulate United Nations committees,” commented Laura Berdych, lead teacher and advisor for Model UN at Four Corners.
The Montessori Model UN program is a two-day global education simulation experience that enables students to learn about the operations of the United Nations and its role as the world’s largest international peacekeeping and humanitarian organization.
“Students get to step into the roles of ambassadors or delegates from countries all over the world. Once they take on this role, they are talking about real problems that need peaceful resolutions,” Berdych said.
During the Montessori Model UN delegations, students were not competing for anything. Instead, they are learning how to come together with others to converse, debate and negotiate resolutions. The students followed the exact same rules and procedures of the United Nations.
Students learned about cultures, governments and peoples of nations throughout the world. They researched their assigned countries and developed written and oral presentation by using critical thinking, problem-solving and evaluative skills.
“Montessori Model UN was hard work but a good experience. I felt like a “professional” doing work for the United Nations. I liked putting our classroom experiences to practice during Model UN,” Scarlett Rejniak, a student at Four Corners, said.
Practicing and using leadership skills in a real-life global situation was the key to success for the students.
“I learned about self-determination – something that we learn in school, but is hard to describe until we actually use it in real life,” said Ruby Krupa Grob, a student at Four Corners. “I was assigned Marshall Island for my project, a country that I never had heard of before. Learning about their needs and resources was interesting. You hear about some of these countries on the news, but when you are acting as a delegate of one of the countries, it becomes so real.”
While in New York, students were responsible for writing position papers on various topics impacting their assigned country. The student delegates sat in committee sessions to present their papers while collaborating with other student delegates from around the world. Each committee worked diligently to create resolutions which were then voted on in the General Assembly Hall at the United Nations.
“Words cannot explain the impact this experience had on our students, who quickly made friends with student delegates from other Montessori schools. Phone numbers, emails and hugs were shared accompanied with some tears. One student shared that it was the best experience of their life!” Stacy Byrd, Head of School at FCMA, commented.