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Learning to be a responsible global citizen is a lifelong journey.

Arguably the key essence of being a global citizen doesn't change as you grow older. Having a deep commitment to social justice and taking an active role in local, national and global communities to create a more sustainable and equitable world may take different forms for a 3-year-old, 6-year-old or 50-year-old, but at their heart they are the same.

Global citizenship education is underpinned by three big ideas: identity, connections and responsibility.

© Centres of Asia-Pacific Excellence

Our framework has three big ideas: identity, connections and responsibility. 

Identity | tuakiritanga aims to strengthen awareness of who we are in the world through relationships with people, place and environment. 

Connections | hononga aims to foster curiosity to learn about, learn with and learn through cultures, languages, people and places within our local and global communities. 

Responsibility | kaitiakitanga invites us to work collaboratively to identify, critically examine and creatively respond to the challenges facing our world today.

When a child is learning about their world, they start by learning about themselves, learning their own language and exploring their own identity and culture. Most then move to learning about those in their whānau and gradually expand into learning about their local, national and eventually global community. At each level, they develop relationships and make connections.

Provocations Consider how the following develop from early childhood through to adulthood: 

  • Understanding their own language, identity and culture and that of others.

  • Developing relationships and making connections between people, places and things in their world.

  • Respect for and celebration of diversity.

  • Being aware of their rights (and the rights of others) and their responsibilities.

  • Being kaitiaki or guardians of their environment.

  • Making a positive difference in their community.

Global challenges are global in nature, yet collaborative in solution (Auckland, 28 November 2015).

©Rafael Benari, 123RF

In the article Global citizenship education in the New Zealand Curriculum, we explore in more depth the place of global citizenship in the New Zealand Curriculum and Te Marautanga o Aotearoa.

Related resources

Introduction to global citizenship education with young learners

GCED and the Mana whenua/Belonging strand in Te Whāriki

Global citizenship education and the principles of Te Whāriki

Find out more how you can get involved and discover what Aotearoa New Zealand is doing to make the world a more equitable, just and sustainable place. Coming Soon

Global citizenship education in the New Zealand Curriculum

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