New Unit: HIV Education

Jamaya AndrewsMore than 16,000 residents in Washington, D.C. live with HIV and the virus disproportionately affects African Americans. With this number representing roughly 2.5 percent of the D.C. population, the World Health Organization categorizes it as a “severe epidemic.”  

HIV education is an issue of great importance to Eastern Senior High School student Jamaya Andrews, a 2014 One World Education Student Ambassador. She chose it as the topic of her recent One World Writing Program essay.

“As a female African-American teenager, I feel as if there are many infections going around that kill off our youth and our future. Why are there no classes on different transmittable diseases? If everyone knew about the types of illnesses and got tested, they could get the help they need to live a healthy life. Therefore, classes on HIV would help educate people about safety and would encourage people to get tested…

HIV is scary to teenagers, but without education, they respond by ignoring the danger. Although they might be shocked or scared if someone talked about the disease and told them possible consequences of the decisions they make, it is more important that they have the knowledge and the ability to avoid infection…

By offering HIV education, we can focus on a better future. These classes would provide numerous benefits: increase self-esteem, educate students about HIV transmission, and encourage kids to get tested. This way, we can ensure that students have books in their hands, instead of HIV in their bodies.”

Her essay is now online as are the accompanying comprehension assessments which are available for educator use. The assessments gauge prior knowledge about the topic, document understanding during and after reading, and provide in-depth prompts for students to respond to Jamaya’s essay. .

On having her essay selected for use by educators, Jamaya said, “It feels great to know that somebody will read my reflection about my topic. People will understand how I feel and see my point of view.”

Creating space for students to write about topics that concern them and allowing teachers to use those essays for peer-to-peer learning is precisely why the One World Education Writing program is so important and effective. Student voices matter.

The program also helps prepare students for future careers, like Jamaya, who plans to become an author of books for teenagers. We look forward to reading more of her published writing in the years to come!

Don't Forget: Vote today to send One World Education to the prestigious SXSWedu conference!

Don't Forget: Vote today to send One World Education to the prestigious SXSWedu conference! - See more at: http://oneworldeducation.org/ms-raught-teacher-feature#sthash.DQA6dFmh.dpuf
Don't Forget: Vote today to send One World Education to the prestigious SXSWedu conference! - See more at: http://oneworldeducation.org/ms-raught-teacher-feature#sthash.DQA6dFmh.dpuf

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