This is a series of math lessons using percents, circle graphs, bar graphs, histograms, and reflective inquiry to examine the themes presented in David Smith's book "If the World Were a Village". There is a set of activities to accompany each of his 9 topics: Nationalities, Languages, Ages, Religions, Food, Schooling and Literacy, Air and Water, Electricity, and Money and Possessions. The "village" consists of 100 people, so students are guided to understand percent as a part of 100, while developing an awareness of the differences and similarities amongst the world's people. The lessons lead students to apply their emerging concepts of percent to the comparison of data.
This material has been successfully used with fifth through ninth grade math classes, including ninth grade RSP pre-algebra. The discussions and questions that students generate are exciting, as they grapple with the real life challenges our world community faces.
An interesting extension might be to have students research how the data has changed since 2002, when this book was published. A class might write
their own updated book with the same themes.