Blue Sky Envisioning Activity
Blue Sky is a visioning activity that helps you get to know your students and what they care about. Participants imagine a better world for their group, neighborhood, community, state, nation, and/or the world. This activity encourages empathy, compassion, and self-expression. It also helps participants learn to react to a negative situation with a positive action. Consider posting key words and ideas as classroom values to “live by” for the school year.
- student copies of the Blue Sky Activity Worksheet below (or blue paper)
- crayons/markers/colored pencils
- optional: old magazines, scissors, and glue/paste (if doing a collage)
- definition of community: A group of people living in the same area and under the same government; a group having common interests and goals and who work together
- Discuss the meaning of the term community as it relates to the participants’ experiences (home, school, friends, interest area, neighborhood, city, state, country, and world).
- Identify what community they are going to focus on, such as your classroom, school, local community, or state.
- Create a group chart to fill in as the group discusses (students may write these ideas quietly before sharing as a group):
What Is Good About [fill in the community identified]? What Can Be Improved or Changed?
- Ask students what they care most about from this brainstormed chart. Discuss.
- Each student may write, draw, color, paint, or create collages on the Blue Sky Activity Worksheet or a piece of blue paper. "What would the community look like in _______ days/months/years with this issue repaired?" This is what the world/community could look like if everyone worked together.
- When the participants are finished, allow each person time to share their creation with the group and talk about why they want this vision.
Reflection and Next Steps:
- As a group, discuss first steps or ideas on how to work toward the visions. This can be helpful in identifying the group’s interest areas for planning service projects. Think about the timeline for action.
- Focus on what tiny steps we can take right now. This may include the following:
- meet with nonprofits,
- investigate needs,
- tell others about the issue or things they can do (be an advocate),
- change habits, or
- collect resources to help others.
- Share your ideas on social media. Take pictures of students holding their illustrations of their visions. Tell what first step they will take together. Share progress on social media to celebrate what you're doing and join with others who have similar Blue Sky visions. Use #LTGBlueSky or #Teach1
- Combine the Blue Sky illustrations into a large collage or “quilt.” The collage or quilt may remain on display for the entire school year, so it may be used for future service-learning planning or as a reference during a year-end celebration.
- Use the planning tool below to help you connect learning and service around the issues your students care about.
- Find Learning to Give lessons related to your planning: use search terms related to academic or philanthropy goals, service project ideas, issues, or community resources.
- Later in the year, ask participants to look at the ideas generated and assess how they are doing on the identified issues.