The importance of the United Nations, the world’s only truly universal global organisation, is apparent now more than ever – and students had the opportunity to experience the workings first-hand in a model UN.
The United Nations is part of the VCE Unit 2 study design, which looks at the political impact of globalisation. Year 11 VCE Australian and Global Politics students at ELTHAM College discovered what it is like to be involved in high level discussions when they participated in an exciting online Model United Nations (MUN), hosted by Ivanhoe Grammar.
The Model United Nations is a creative simulation of the United Nations General Assembly, in which students represent member states of the UN. As delegates, students used their negotiation and debating skills to discuss the UN’s Sustainable Development Goal #14 ‘Life Below Water.’
With one group representing Chile and the other representing Germany, provocative debates ensued! The students debated various global crises such as the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines and the detrimental effects of climate change. This proved to be an enriching learning experience for students; one which helped them to develop their diplomacy skills and global awareness.
Despite the fact that the MUN was held online due to COVID-19 restrictions, ELTHAM students threw themselves into active participation and found it to be an extremely fulfilling and rewarding experience.
They deepened their learning around the formal protocols of an intergovernmental organisation and the complexities of reaching multilateral agreements. This authentic learning experience raised their global awareness and reinforced their understanding of the importance of global solutions to deal with global problems.
ELTHAM College Politics teacher Helen Lucas led the delegates, saying that students were learning about the UN by ‘doing’ the UN. Students are already looking forward to being global citizens and participating in MUN again in 2022.