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Global Learning

Do you want to make learning global and instil empathy in your classroom?

A project-based learning method that encourages students to work collaboratively and proactively, through engaging with key global issues relating to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.

HundrED 2018


HundrED has selected this innovation to

HundrED 2018

Web presence






Target group
September 2017
What can possibly be better than learning about global issues directly from each other?

About the innovation

What is Global Learning?

Formal education tends to focus heavily on knowledge acquisition and there is limited interaction between students from different classrooms. The Global Learning model changes this. Learners from all over the world collaborate on ambitious projects addressing pressing real-life challenges based around the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

Through Global Learning, two impressive international projects have been completed so far. For the Project Water, 10 schools across 9 countries worked together to identify water issues and find both local and global solutions. Within the Human Differences project, 50 schools across 37 countries tackled important questions about global equality with the aim of building bridges instead of walls. Next up is the Climate Action project, starting in October 2017. The most ambitious yet, this project is bringing together 250 schools across 66 countries to collaborate on climate change topics, with the aim of developing learners' understanding of key issues before working on ideas to take action. 

Within each month-long project, students focus on a different topic relating to the overall theme every week. Learners conduct research, brainstorm ideas, hold discussions, give presentions and share their findings through weekly videos. The video presentations are published on a shared project website. The role of the participating educators is not to present knowledge to the students, but instead to guide the process through encouraging discussion and pointing learners in the right direction when searching for resources.

The outcomes so far have been overwhelming. Each group of students has learnt in very different ways, through research, discussion, reflection, collaboration and offering feedback. Within every project, several core academic subjects, such as science, history, maths and literature, have been covered. Students have spontaneously learnt to use a number of tools to further their learning, acting proactively and collaboratively. During the final weeks of each projects, students often independently arranged Skype calls to discuss their findings with one another. 

Global Learning offers a way for young people to see the world from many different perspectives, work with other students from all over the globe and tackle some of the most important challenges facing our planet today. In doing so, learners gain valuable skills such as problem-solving, teamwork, creative thinking and communication. Learners are encouraged to think innovatively and work together to have a positive impact on the world around them.

Impact & scalability

Impact & Scalability


Students from all over the world connect and work together to learn about global issues that affect their planet. Young people have a truly global learning experience, much broader in scope than typical lessons in the classroom.


Global Learning broadens learners' perspectives, encouraging them to celebrate diversity, inclusivity and open-mindedness. Basing projects on the SDGs encourages learners to think creatively about some of the most pressing issues facing society today, promoting awareness and a proactive approach to addressing global challenges.


Global Learning is scalable by nature. The project can take place across any number of countries. As the number of countries involved in the project increases, the positive impact becomes even greater.

Implementation steps

Get in touch
Contact Koen Timmers, the founder of Global Learning, via email or Twitter.

Global Learning projects are launched twice a year and any school from around the world is very welcome to participate.

Provide some details about your team
This is so that everyone working on each project can get to know each other better.

Participating classes will be asked to share a few details such as the names and ages of the students, which country the school is based in and contact details (such as Skype names) so everyone can keep in touch. 

Start the project
Begin by meeting the other participants online and then the really exciting part can begin!

Each class taking part in the project will be added to the project website, where resources can be shared and students can connect with each other. Projects cover a new topic each week and learners work together to conduct research, brainstorm ideas and create action plans. 

Share your progress
Each class will create a weekly video or presentation throughout the project. 

Everyone working on the project will be able to upload photos, videos and progress updates to the project website so that all participants from around the world can be kept up to date. Connecting with students and teachers in other countries and working collaboratively to find creative solutions to global issues is what Global Learning is all about.

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