Go Abroad. From Home.
Global Social Issues Research Project
Mr. Smith at Cardinal Newman HS

Unit Overview:

In this six-week unit, students will select a nation that interests them, research its contemporary social issues on the nation's New York Times "Times Topics" page, and write a project proposal, two They Say, I Say worksheets, two Big 5 worksheets, and a formal letter to a real person, speaking out about a real issue referenced in an NYT article. Students will publish all their work on a Tackk page.


1. Improve close reading skills of non-fiction/informational texts.

2. Practice summarizing, paraphrasing, and quoting authors.

3. Improve the ability to engage in academic writing and discussion by using the They Say, I Say templates to “enter a conversation about ideas” between you—the writer—and your sources to reflect your critical thinking (They Say, I Say ix).

4. Select a place, culture, people, ideas, that fascinate you and learn all that you can about it to improve your understanding of and commitment to being a global citizen.

5. Increase interest in traveling and/or studying abroad after high school.


Your classmates, teacher, and the public.


1. Write a thoughtful project proposal on the following questions: a) What nation did you chose? b) Why are you interested in and curious about this place? c) What do you already know about this country’s history, geography, culture, and social issues? d)  What do you predict you will learn and understand better? e) Why is this nation and it's social issues important in the global community?

2. Write two Summary and Response One-pagers and two Big 5 Analytical Tools on interesting articles from your country's New York Times Topics page.

3. Write a formal letter to the author, editor, or person connected to a New York Times editorial from your country's Topics page.

4. Find one article that discuss a social issue in the nation you are researching. Then, write a textual analysis essay in which you include comments on the significance of the context, audience, purpose, and formal and stylistic features.

5. Create a Tackk page (name it tackk.com/lastnamegoabroad) and post the final drafts of assignments 1-4 on it. In "options", you must make your Tackk page public and tag it "goabroad".

Student Project Pages 2015

About Study Abroad

About Global Citizen Year