Current World Issues

Grades 6-8
Subjects: English Language Arts, Mathematics


Current World Issues focuses on current world issues, prompting students to identify the most urgent problems and assess its potential impact if solved. Introducing United Nations 17 sustainable development goals and encouraging students to recognize as many as possible. This lesson includes a small group activity using issue cards to engage students in in-depth discussions.

NB Curricular Connections

English Language Arts

  • Strand: Interactions – Big Ideas: Expression, Exchanges, and Reception,
  • Strand: Reading – Big Ideas: Vocabulary and Reading Comprehension,
  • Strand: Representations – Big Idea: Composition


  • Strand: Number – Big Idea: Number Sense
  • Strand: Statistics and Probability – Big Idea: Data Analysis.


What you’ll need

  • Issue Cards (1 copy of each)
  • Chart Paper
  • Video
  • Smart Board or projector
  • Markers
  • Tape
  • Pencils


  1. Small Group Talk: Print one of each of the issue cards (double-sided) – there are 17 in total. (Note: You do NOT need to use them all. Feel free to choose and narrow down the number of issues.)
  2. Divide the class into small groups or partners. Have them read over the issue, as well as discuss the three questions on the back. The cards are included below.
  3. Issue Organization: Place three pieces of chart paper, labeled: Global, National, and Local, around the room.
  4. Next, have groups review the issue that they discussed. Even though there may be a “local, national, or global” title on the printed documents, have learners place the issue where they feel it fits best:
  • Local – a serious issue in our community, affecting many people.
  • National – an issue for all of Canada (provinces and territories); all national peoples
  • Global – an international, complex problem
  1. Discuss, as a whole group, where the issues were taped and why. Move some around, after discussion, if needed. Then, focus on the local issues and ask: “What evidence of this issue do you see or feel in our community?”

Reflection Activity 

Please see the attached PDF for several choices on how you and your learners can reflect on today’s activity.

Global Competencies