Life around the world

Sunday, 13 December, 2015 - 20:58

Changing the world from the classroom

by AlexC

In Germany, it is normal to wear your own clothes to school, since there are no rules on uniform. So why did I and a few members of my older students spend two days wandering around the campus in business suits speaking English?

In fact, during these two days, a rather special event was taking place: our MUN Conference.

MUN stands for Model United Nations, and it is a conference made for young people who want to see how the United Nations really works. The students get a chance to represent a country, maybe one they don't know much about, and debate with other students from different schools about real issues which the world is facing now. The aim is to write a resolution at the end, which will help solve the problem.

The theme of our conference was 'Transcend Borders: Discover Peace', which meant that the students would be looking at issues which divided communities and how to overcome these boundaries. 'Transcend' is just a longer word for 'crossing' or 'overcoming'.

However, the students didn't just focus on physical boundaries between countries, but also breaking down boundaries between different genders, different sexualities and different nationalities. Of course, this included how to help others whose homeland is elsewhere, since all the students were very concerned about the refugee crisis.

Not only was the conference a challenge in thinking about difficult global issues, but also because everyone had to speak in English! On top of that, the students had to use the correct debating language too. Tricky stuff! But of course this was brilliant practice for everyone there, and after a while, you couldn't even tell the students weren't speaking in their first language!

I'd really recommend joining a conference if you get the chance, and sharing your ideas. It's the best way to make new international friends and to think about how to make the world we live in a better place. We learned that the UN certainly has a lot of work on its hands!

Here's a glossary of useful words and phrases, which will make joining a conference much easier:

Delegate: a student representing a country
Chair: the person controlling the debate
Committee: a group of delegates
General Assembly: a group of delegates, or a committee, who will discuss the same issue
Security Council: a smaller committee in charge of international security
Language level

Have you ever taken part in a conference like the one that AlexC tells us about? If not, would you like to? 

Submitted by hermione123 on Tue, 01/12/2021 - 10:01

wow! that sounds interesting :)
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Submitted by IGYOON on Wed, 07/15/2020 - 11:42

English courses near you