One Globe Kids is a social technology intervention, created and managed by Globe Smart Kids, Inc., that simulates inter-group friendship. The program uses technology to create an imagined contact experience that aims to increase empathy and reduce prejudice and the anxiety of interacting with others. The theory behind the app is that imagined contact, a form of indirect intergroup contact, can positively change attitudes and behaviour towards people in other groups.
The program uses technology to create a simulated interaction experience that sparks imagination and is appropriate and safe for children 4 – 10 years. The materials help children experience having friends across geographic, linguistic and other boundaries that may otherwise be difficult to cross. One Globe Kids works with real children and families around the globe to create simulated interactions, bases their product design on published imagined contact research, and targets young children at a time when implicit bias is known to develop, but is usually too early for a traditional prejudice-reduction intervention.
The materials are available for children and their caregivers in the form of the One Globe Kids iOS app as well as for schools and teachers as the Globe Smart Education 1 iOS app and Online Friends platform. The app is available worldwide, but the highest number of downloads in 2014 were in the United States, United Kingdom, China, Australia, Canada and France. Materials for children are in available in English, French and Dutch, and include:
Stories: Each story, told child-to-child with photographs, is developed to help children feel as though they have made a new friend and draw connections between their life and that of others. Each story has more than 100 images and child-recorded audio to make the interaction as real as possible. Children can join their friend as they get ready in the morning, play with friends and family, have dinner, go to school, etc.
Play: Interactive features that try to create the feeling of a proximity and familiarity between the user and their new friend. Children decide where the story goes next, put themselves and their friends on a globe, try speaking new languages, share their own story, and listen to the recordings.
The Globe Smart Education app is designed for use by teachers and students in a classroom setting. It includes the same imagined contact story approach as the app for children, as well as additional materials that enable educators to infuse language arts and literacy subjects with a global perspective. For each location (Haiti, Indonesia, New York City, The Netherlands and Burundi), the app includes a teacher guide with background information on the location, discussion themes, and activities appropriate for individual, small group and large group work. The materials can be used to encourage 21st century skills such as social and emotional intelligence, perspective-taking and creative and adaptive thinking. Education materials are currently available only in English.
Teachers have participated in pilots of the program, where the stories were found to be useful tools for shared reading and could be used to start conversations in the classroom about topics like empathy, tolerance and inclusion. The organization has worked with schools in the US, the UK, and the Netherlands.
The app has been recognized by several reviewers, including being listed by Scholastic as one of the 6 awesome apps for social studies, and as one of the 50 awesome apps for teachers. The One Globe Kids app is free to download and comes with one story, Valdo in Haiti. Every additional story is $1.99 each. The Globe Smart Education app includes 8 stories and teacher support materials.One Globe Kids uses technology to create a simulated interaction experience between children around the globe, that is available for use by children, caregivers and teachers in primary schools.
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CEI approaches in actionStudent supportLearning materials for studentsParental/community engagement in support of studentsSchool supportLearning through PlayLiteracyEnglish languageCulture/indigenous knowledge
Model details2009Not-for-profitEthics & Values/Religion21st century skills (soft skills)OtherLiteracyEnglish languageCulture/indigenous knowledgeActiveLong-term projectFree original app with one story. $1.99 per additional story. $19.99 for the educational package
TechnologyInternetTablet or e-readerLearning materials for studentsTeaching materialsOtherImagined ContactJLoop, CA, USA
Scale20000Over 20000 downloads in 76 countries between 2012 - 2015November, 2015
The app that was launched in 2010 was called My Haiti. Today the app has changed to include 9 stories, with 3 more in the pipeline. The stories are available in 3 languages for both Apple devices and for internet users via an online subscription. An education package was added in 2013. The One Globe Kids app has been downloaded over 20,000 times globally.
The organization plans to add new stories, including stories of refugees and immigrants to help reduce prejudice against these groups in specific countries and globally. Stories will be translated into more languages and aligned with national education standards in diverse countries. The organization also plans to make its materials available on more devices and collaborate with education-focused organizations to increase use in developing countries.
The organization is collaborating with Dr. Lindsey Cameron at the University of Kent in the United Kingdom to further study and understand the impact of imagined and simulated contact on children, and the role that digital media can play in reducing prejudice from a young age.
Globe Smart Kids is currently approaching grantors interested in the fields of primary education, social justice, and prejudice reduction for support to scale up and improve the materials. The organization is looking for opportunities to collaborate with schools and educators in other countries to make the materials available in more languages and get it into more schools.
Monitoring & EvaluationNo
As the organization complies with the US Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), they do not engage directly with users. They only track aggregate figures about downloads via Apple.
In collaboration with the University of Kent, a robust assessment of the impact of One Globe Kids on the moderators of intergroup contact and prejudice reduction (attitudes, perceived similarities, willingness for contact, contact-related anxiety, etc.) will be conducted with students in both classroom and laboratory settings. A tool to evaluate teacher confidence in integrating global studies and addressing diversity in the classroom will also be developed.
Globe Smart Kids also intends to add a game-based monitoring system with badges and challenges to motivate students and help teachers track student interaction with the product.
Surveys will be used to monitor the program’s value for money and user satisfaction among educators.NoneWe do not collect dataNoNo