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Make a Difference

BNCs that are part of the “Achieving 21st Century Skills” project have been planning activities that address important issues and challenges the world faces nowadays. This educational project for youth, that began in September 2014, promotes learning in Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Design, and Math (STEAM fields) through the steadfast contemplation and application of curated content from the Smithsonian Institution.

Brazil has reported a nearly 50% jump in cases of dengue fever over a three-week period in January, a worrying finding. With that in mind, we planned a program to raise awareness on what citizens can do to fight Mosquito-Borne Infections.

At Casa Thomas Jefferson, we kicked off the program by showing the animation ‘What Are Mosquito-Borne Infections?’ to explain how diseases like dengue are transmitted. We also used a set of “Did You Know” questions about dengue to raise awareness of the need to eradicate the insect without harming the environment. As a follow-up, participants made a mosquito trap to take home. Our team prototyped the trap to make sure it worked well and placed a few throughout the school to motivate people to come and learn how to make their own. If you are interested in running a similar program, see more on the project’s wiki page.

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