OPEN & SSBI : Kids Worldwide Unite


EngageKids Kids Worldwide Unite: Save the Black Rhino 



Small Solutions, Big Ideas (SSBI) and Open Planet Education Network (OPEN) are partnering to launch a series of educational programs globally that engage students in real-world challenges. OPEN and SSBI are joining together to expand the collaborative work that OPEN’s multi-player online adventure games add to the rich curriculum of the One Laptop per Child (OLPC) Sugar learning tools. This opportunity empowers youth as a connected community. This learning model is inspired by Seymour Papert, regarded as the father of constructivism and technology in education.

Following this summer’s successful launch of our Phase 1 pilot program linking schools in Kenya and South Bronx, SSBI and OPEN are developing a semester-length curriculum, Kids Worldwide Unite: Save the Black Rhino.

Based on lessons learned during the pilot, Phase II will focus on the illegal wildlife trade of black rhinos. Students will evaluate policies and make recommendations on how to combat illegal international trade networks and better protect rhinos’ habitats. Students will use education and social media to generate awareness of the issues.


Generous support from corporations, foundations and individuals will enable SSBI and OPEN to give SSBI African Rhino pilot schools increased access to Save the Black Rhino and enhanced Rhino-related curriculums. These funds will also allow SSBI to continue its collaboration with OPEN, creating new curriculum and expanding the Rhino Global Education Program. OPEN plans to distribute Save the Black Rhino and its other games to classrooms, after school programs, libraries, museums, aquariums, national parks, and individuals and families worldwide in order to:

  • Expand education programs and new global challenge educational games in the SSBI and OPEN series, including ocean conservation
  • Create a sustainable global education program with sales of OPEN educational games and related services
  • Establish collaborative online communities for children worldwide including  Vietnam, China, the USA, UK, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Australia, Brazil, Mexico, France, Russia, and India


SSBI and OPEN are seeking support for Phase II Kids Worldwide Unite: Save the Black Rhino program in support of the program in our founding classrooms in Nairobi and Bungoma, Kenya and NYC.  These funds will facilitate comprehensive curriculum, professional support and additional technologies for the second semester of this school year starting February 2014. On December 4, 2013, SSBI and OPEN are hosting an educational discussion and celebration in honor of Seymour Papert. We welcome sponsorships of $5,000, $2,500 and $500 for this event.


2014 Program: Kids Worldwide Unite: Save the Black Rhino Phase II

Curriculum and Activities for children ages 8 – 14 will include:

  • Connected teams of children and online game sessions with Save the Black Rhino.
  • Citizen science app lab or field work for use during schools session
  • International Skype sessions for all participants
  • Curriculum targeted to broader classroom activities outside game sessions

Equipment and On-Ground Africa Support Services (5 classrooms, 20 kids):

Funding will provide 20 XO laptops, 8 Windows laptops, media, connectivity and communication supplies to expand student engagement. Funding will also support training, the management of the program, and provide stipends for school-based teachers and coordinators.

Project Development, General and Game System Management: 

Funding will provide the development of the endangered species curriculum and the support for expanded live game sessions of Save the Black Rhino game, inter-classroom coordination, program tracking and evaluation, social media support, additional office and support expenses. In addition, funds will be allocated for the development of a citizen science app supporting Save the Black Rhino for XO and Android tablets. The curriculum and programs will remain with the schools and communities as permanent resources.



Program Description:

Students will collaborate in game playing, communication sessions, and citizen science programs to share lessons learning and best practices, research outcomes, and problem solving strategies around the global issue of the imminent extinction of the Black Rhino.

Skills used in research and game simulations and assessment of Rhino survival.

  • Collaboration Skills in Building Strategic Solutions to Real World Problems
  • Critical Thinking
  • Role Playing Empowering Advocacy
  • Advocacy of challenging global issues (i.e., illegal wildlife trade and endangered species)
  • Computer Skills: Video, Photo, Audio, Design
  • Science Quantitative Skills: Measurement, Evaluation, Monitoring
  • Communication and Media

Small Solutions, Big Ideas (

 Small Solutions, Big Ideas believes access to technology helps bridge the education gap and achieve the goals of the UN BDGs. Bringing technology to children is now achievable through the OLPC XO design and availability.

 SSBI is reaching children in rural isolated communities in Africa and giving them access to high quality, innovative technology learning tools. SSBI is mentoring teachers, encouraging them to integrate technology into their lessons. SSBI is helping build constructive curriculum models that help children as thinkers and problem solvers.

SSBI has built a network of teachers, schools, community leaders and learning centers and will now leverage this community to connect kids worldwide via OPEN so they can address critical challenges in the future. This generation of children has already shown that they can begin to play a role in solving the world’s problems before they finish schooling. Tapping into this potential – by helping children – provides a sustainable future for their and our communities.

 One Planet Education Network (

OPEN is a leading provider of online multiplayer adventure learning games and related online education programs. Our 3D role-playing games engage and inspire kids worldwide to develop critical thinking and problem solving skills using educationally and emotionally rich storylines.


  • Environmental Studies: Endangered Species (i.e., Save the Black Rhino series), Habitat Restoration and Remediation, invasive species
  • Environmental Studies: Ocean Conservation and Restoration, Life Cycle Product Development & Management, Sustainable Resource Extraction & Utilization, Water Quality, Agriculture, Logging, Mining, Pollution Remediation
  • Next Generation Renewable Energy Systems and Storag
  • Human Migration: Immigration
  • Geospatial Technologies: GIS, GPS, Google Earth Engine tech

 Contact Sandra Thaxter today to confirm your sponsorship of this amazing educational initiative. or 617-320-1098  

All Donations are Tax Deductible

Payable to Small Solutions 501c3 (27-1515413)


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