Ask us about Model United Nations
Today's answer comes from Louis Kim, MUN Expert from New York University and participant in Global Classrooms conferences in Seoul and New York City.
It seems like you know what an opening speech is mainly about. If I were to elaborate more, here is a breakdown of an ideal opening speech (based on my experience).
Start with a brief introduction of your country like the location, the allies, and anything special in regard to the topic that you’d like to mention. Also, if applicable, explain how your nation is relevant to the issue. This section will serve as a great bridge for you to move onto discussing your nation’s official stance on the issue at hand. While you are at it, I recommend that you bring up a statistic or two that would gather other delegate’s attention (and cite the sources as you do so!). You can continue your speech by talking about the actions that your government has taken to solve the issue or suggest a measure that your country is willing to support. It’s always good to end your opening speech by encouraging fellow delegates to cooperate fully, along with a short “thank you for listening.”
Now, remember that the content of the speech won’t reach the audience if you don’t deliver it well. Try not to read off a script; practice ahead. You will be fine. I hope this helps and good luck to you!
Today's answer come from Gael Black, graduate of the University at Albany, and former Secretary-General of the Global Classrooms International Middle School Conference. She is a native New Yorker and currently lives and works in New York City.
Of course you can begin preparing for Model UN in the 6th grade! In fact, it is the perfect time for you to begin your MUN career! Not only can you begin preparing for Model UN, but Global Classrooms has two fantastic opportunities in New York City for 5th-8th grade students looking to participate in Model UN.
If your school already has a Model UN team, then you should have your teacher visit the Global Classrooms website for more information on the International Middle School Model UN Conference and Global Classrooms: New York.
If your school does not have a team and you just want to begin preparing yourself for High School Model UN, here are a few tips that will help as you begin your journey:
1. I believe that the most vital part of being a Model UN participant is knowing where the country that you are representing is located. Just knowing where a country is located can provide you with a lot of important information. A good place to start is being able to identify what regional bloc a country belongs to. From there, you will be able to start memorizing exactly where they are located. There are many online resources that can help you with this, but I highly recommend Sheppard Software’s World Geography Games.
2. A vast knowledge of global issues and politics is very important in Model UN. You will need to be familiar with many things including the different types of governments that exist, the status of relations between different countries, and the issues that these countries are facing. You are not expected to know everything about every country, but you should be building a library of knowledge over time. A great to place to begin this collection of knowledge is in the classroom. Use your history class as a starting point by doing a little extra research on a country or topic that you’re already learning about (once you’ve finished your homework of course!).
3. Unless you work for the United Nations, Model UN is probably the only other place where you’ll need to have a working knowledge of the different UN Organs and how they work. Position papers, rules of procedure, and resolutions can seem very intimidating at first, but the Global Classrooms website has some really great activities that will help you become a pro in no time! Even if you don’t end up working for the United Nations, like most aspects of Model UN, these skills and knowledge can benefit you in many different occupations.
The key thing to remember is that you have so many resources right at your fingertips. Your library card, school textbooks, teachers, and the Global Classrooms website are tools that can provide you with all the knowledge you need for Model UN! Good luck!
Global Classrooms Model UN Resources: http://bit.ly/QrJPZ3
Sheppard's Online Geography Games: http://bit.ly/MiVl4f
Hello! Thanks for your question, and congratulations on running your second conference.
As long as your topics are grade-level appropriate, planning for a middle school Model UN conference is similar to organizing most other Model UN events. Here are a few things to keep in mind.
There are a few things every conference organizer should include when preparing their staff: Conference Overview & History, Conference Schedule, Staff Roles and Expectations, an Overview of Conference Services, Conference newspaper, journal, blog and/or social media outlets, Rules of Procedure, Position-Specific Training, Mock (Practice) Sessions, and your conference’s Awards Policies.
Part of preparing your staff is making sure they know how to speak with, guide, and interact with delegates (and teachers). At Global Classrooms, we call this rhetoric. Your conference rhetoric should be appropriate for middle school students, some of who may be new to the activity, and should match the overall tone of your conference (fun, educational, casual, strict, competitive, etc.).
Raising funds is a sensitive part of every Model UN organization’s budget. When budgeting for your conference, be sure to take into account the costs required versus fees expected while setting your fundraising goals. This will help you set a firm benchmark for how much money you’ll need to raise.
First, look for available funds from your school district, state, and federal programs. These are sometimes rare, but worth looking into. Many schools fund their programs through various traditional means, as well — bake sales, car washes, raffles, etc.
Some groups also look to local civic organizations for help, like Lions Clubs, Kiwanis Clubs, Jaycees, etc. These can be a vital source of support in your community.
Finally, developing sponsorship materials that outline the benefits of your program can help you raise money from local businesses, as well as national and international companies, which often have large philanthropic foundations. Your local library may have resources to help you write grant proposals. And don’t forget, you can even sell ad space in your conference program.
You can learn more about planning a Model UN conference on our website: http://bit.ly/NGbE9w
We hope this helps. And make sure to keep up with Global Classrooms: Chicago and all our programs worldwide by following us on Facebook: http://on.fb.me/Oalfrr
Thanks for your question.
Model UN delegates have to research a few main areas to stay engaged in debate:
1) The UN system
2) The country they represent
3) The topic being discussed
4) Model UN rules and procedures
This means that while you're always approaching the topic from the view point of Malaysia, you also have to know about the committee your in, it's purpose, and who may agree with you in committee — your allies, or voting bloc.
You're representing your nation, but looking for a global solution.
Remember that you're not only the ambassador from Malaysia, you're also a member of a committee seeking and international, agreed-upon solution. You have to think: How might that work out in real life? What are Malaysia's interests, and how does that fit with other nations'?
For more, check out our Model UN Preparation Guide on our website: http://bit.ly/NGbE9w
We hope this helps, and good luck!
UNA-USA has a comprehensive guide to planning your own Model UN event on our website: http://bit.ly/OlGVp1
Whether you're planning a large event or a small one, preparing ahead of time will help everyone have a more relaxed, educational, and fulfilling experience.
We hope this helps, and good luck!
Today's answer comes from Shareen Khaliq, MUN Expert and Global Classrooms volunteer from the University of York.
It’s lovely to hear that you are thinking to start your own MUN club! MUN is rather big in the UK and it’s really started to grow at secondary school level over the past few years. If you want to start one, I say there’s no reason you shouldn’t. Here are a few ways you can go about doing so:
1. Start by calling mini-debates after school or during lunchtimes in your own sixth form. Choose topical international issues you find interesting inviting all sixth-formers. Assign countries and topics every session for the next one to give time to anyone wanting to prepare. This can allow you to get started in the first instance.
2. Then if you want your club to attend another conference there are a few secondary school level conferences around. Not all being the best advertised, but a bit of browsing and you may be surprised on what you find. You can also submit an application for Mulberry’s Global Classrooms London conference, which occurs twice a year (www.mmun.org.uk). Additionally, contact other schools or universities you find and ask them how they run their societies for tips.
3. If you can’t find a conference near you, get schools together in your local borough and start having debates together, maybe once a term. You can add more formal MUN rules as you start working, with a wealth of resources available online to support you (e.g. http://www.una.org.uk/content/school-resources-organisers)
4. Whether or not you get to attend an external conference while at Sixth Form, having your club at school will definitely still be a great experience. It will introduce you to various global issues and allow you to have exciting debates on them within your school. Then you can join a MUN club once at university: nearly all universities in the UK have one and the majority their own conference. So you will be spoilt for choice.
The best advice I can give, from a student who was in the founding MUN team at my school in North London, is if you want to do it give it a go. You may even surprise yourself on how much it grows in your Sixth Form on. It may not all happen at once, but step-by-step it will grow. The best of luck and I hope you find this answer useful.
Our answer comes from Miguel Arroyo, MUN Expert and Global Classrooms volunteer from the University of Bridgeport.
Hi! It's normal to be nervous on your first MUN conference! The best advise I can give you is that the more you prepare and practice for the conference, the more confident you will be on your performance in committee. Here are some tips that I hope you find useful:
1) Identify which topic/s is important for your country and which regional block or allies you will be working in committee.
2) Understand the topic/s you will be addressing in your committee and be ready to propose a solution to a problem. Have at least two strong solutions per topic just in case one of them is not popular among the countries your will be working with.
3) Make sure your speeches address the position of your country, and the point of views that are been addressed in committee. You can do two type of speeches, informative or persuasive. Make sure you know which one you would want to use in accordance to how you see the debate is going in committee.
4) Get to know your Dais (chairperson)! Understand their roles and don't be afraid to ask them questions.
5) Smile and have fun! MUN is a great experience and I'm sure you will have a great time!
Best of luck!
We get questions like this a lot. While planning a simulation is a great way to get newcomers engaged in the activity, careful planning is required to make sure everyone has a smooth and fulfilling experience.
The best place to start is on UNA-USA's website, with our Conference Planner's Guide. The guide is extensive, and covers everything you'd need for a larger MUN conference, but much of the basic advice should help you get started: http://bit.ly/OlGVp1
Hope this helps, and good luck!
Hi Umair! Resolutions are documents that represent the outcome of a Model UN debate. They should include specific recommendations to help solve the global issue you're discussing.
Generally, MUN resolutions closely follow the format of real UN resolutions, and have two main parts: preambulatory clauses, which help define the issue, and operative clauses, which make recommendations for a solution.
You can learn more about resolutions, and view a sample resolution on our Model UN Preparation Guide: http://bit.ly/LaRpSx
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Global Classrooms® Ask A MUN Expert connects students and teachers with MUN veterans from across North America and around the world, answering your questions about the Model UN activity.