Learning at Home: Worksheets and Activities on Resourcefulness

Each week, the WorldStrides Education team prepares new lessons and activities around a broad, central theme that aims to give teachers, students, and parents new tools and resources that can be useful in the classroom (the new online classroom, that is) and at home. This week, our focus is on resourcefulness.

Being resourceful means using what we have to solve problems. At this specific time in our lives, being resourceful feels like a requirement. However, is it ever that simple?

A full understanding of resourcefulness carries with it a few other intangible qualities: A feeling of hope, where existing, as well as new problems, can be solved. The confidence to know that no problem is insurmountable. A bit of creativity. Not the creativity that paints masterpieces, rather one that allows you to see the world differently, to determine new uses for old items. This is the level of creativity that MacGyver used – with one paperclip and piece of gum. Finally, resourcefulness requires persistence. We cannot be successful without first experiencing a few failures. Persistence is skinned knees while riding a bike, or the first few pans of burnt cookies. Persistence is speaking out for what we believe in despite dissenting opinions.

As we reflect upon our communities, the nation, and the world, we see an almost insurmountable list of problems to fix. Resourcefulness reminds us that we have the tools, the skills, and the drive to overcome whatever bump may lie in the road ahead. As Ralph Waldo Emerson said, “It’s not the destination, it’s the journey.”

Social Studies / Leadership Worksheets and Activities 

Best for:  Middle/High School
⏳: 60-120 minutes

In history, there are so many stories of resourcefulness. How did individuals or groups solve problems, defy the odds, or persist when they were told they couldn’t do something? What qualities or attributes assist in being resourceful?  Learn about a suffragist, an Olympic track star, female pilots during World War II, or those who survived a shipwreck in Antarctica to see how they were resourceful and why some of them were able to make a difference in their communities.

Consider: What does resourcefulness mean to you? How can you be resourceful in your community? What cause do you care about?

Science Worksheets and Activities

Best for:  Middle/High School
⏳: 60-90 minutes
The Science Behind Your Supper

Science works hard behind the scenes of nearly everything we do in our lives, including how we get our food and how we cook. This week we will consider how much water is used in food production, whip up something delicious in the kitchen using what we have, and see how we can be resourceful all throughout the house!

Consider: How can you maintain the integrity of a recipe if you have missing ingredients? How does our food consumption and other daily activities affect our water footprint?

International Worksheets and Activities

Best for:  Middle/High School
⏳: 60-90 minutes
Resourcefulness and the Global Supply Chain

The coronavirus pandemic is testing our resources and our resourcefulness. Students have been forced into online learning. Professionals have started working from home. Restaurants are delivering food straight to your car. Scientists and medical professionals are racing to find treatments and develop a vaccine while factories are changing their lines to produce ventilators and protective equipment. Resourcefulness means looking at what was once ordinary and seeing new possibilities. Learn about the global supply chain and what it means to actually go from farm to table.

Movement Activities

Best for:  All ages
⏳: 5-30 minutes
Dance like Nobody’s Watching

Improvisational dance can be liberating, especially if you are used to the demands of memorizing choreography. The resources and prompts below can help you explore new movements and modes of expression in your environment.

Resources: Watch this video to see how contact improvisation can help you become aware of how you’re moving through space. Improvisational dance sometimes requires the involvement of a partner, but that’s not always the case! Using this resource, you can try improvisational dance in the solitude of your own home.

Reflect: How is dancing at home different than dancing on a stage or in a studio? What is the difference between movement and dance? 

Art Learning Activity

Best for:  Middle School
⏳: 30-60 minutes

Challenging times and circumstances can push us to our limits. Thankfully, artists of all kinds – visual artists, musicians, and dancers alike – are no strangers to problem-solving. In fact, some of the most satisfying, thought-provoking, and meaningful art can come out of limitation. For one recent example, check out this incredible performance filmed on Zoom by current and former Juilliard students. Even in isolation, artists can collaborate to make something beautiful. This is creativity and resourcefulness at its finest!

Consider: What resources are needed to make art? Why is improvisation useful in different forms of art? What are the benefits and challenges of improvisation? How does it feel to improvise a piece of art, versus following a plan? How does improvisational art compare to art that is carefully composed?

Our theme for next week will be Curiosity. Be sure to come back to check out more timely resources and activities to share with your students! And, if you want to give our Education team some feedback or ideas for future topics, reach out to us at discovery@worldstrides.com