Resources to Support Teaching and Learning Virtually Due to COVID-19.

Better World Day

Better World Day is more important than ever during this global crisis. 

We are retooling  Better World Day to enlist students to contribute safely from home through Connection Cards—messages of appreciation for courageous workers protecting our safety and lives, and messages of kindness for those who are isolated and needy. If your school community was planning to join us for Better World Day, or is inspired to do so now, you can get the details in our FAQ.

View Our FAQ

Friday, May 1, 2020

Every year on the first Friday in May, EL Education students, educators, and community members across the country celebrate Better World Day to shine a light on learning that contributes to a better world. We invite partner schools and districts to participate in Better World Day 2020 in a new way, by joining national teams taking on similar issues in their communities. By connecting with peers nationally, students and teachers will take more ownership than ever before, and harness their collective power to make a greater positive change in their school communities and beyond.

Join Better World Day 2020

Join hundreds of EL Education schools nationwide as they team up to contribute to a better world for Better World Day 2020 on May 1, 2020. Choose a team that represents your school’s interests and sign up to benefit from virtual check-ins, shared plans, group activities, and an increased impact with your team.

Take the Survey

Literacy For All Team

Eled Bwdicons Web 1019 Literacy

Hunger, Housing, Homelessness Team

Eled Bwdicons Web 10192 Housing

Environmental Stewardship Team

Eled Bwdicons Web 10193 Environment

Building Inclusive, Equitable Communities Team

Eled Bwdicons Web 10194 Equity

Better World Day 2019 is a wrap, but the learning lives on. See highlights below from more than 120 schools across the country, involving tens of thousands of EL Education students and teachers as they took civic action to make the world a safer, stronger, and more just place locally and globally. The media also took notice -- check out highlights of media coverage that included more than 30 stories and counting!


Follow hashtag #BetterWorldDay here and across social media to see students in action in communities around the country. Share Better World Day moments to be featured here where students can see and celebrate each other.

2019 Events

From homeless outreach and advocacy in Bemidji, Minnesota, to trail maintenance in Kettle Falls, Washington, students at EL Education partner schools will make their mark on the world on May 1—and throughout the school year. Below is a peek at the student-led events, representing just a handful of the 100+ activities that will take place across the country. 

Check out our Facebook page to see live streams from events throughout the day, or check the the social media feed below. Students and communities posted updates across all social media channels with hashtag #BetterWorldDay. 

Brooklyn, NY: Launch Expeditionary Learning Charter School

Launch Bwd 2019

Middle school students work to end hunger in their community by planting at two Brooklyn farm sites, stocking a local food pantry, and creating packages for area children experiencing homelessness for the Campaign Against Hunger.

Detroit, MI: Detroit Public Schools Community District

Detroit Public Schools Little Free Library

Fifth-grade students at eight schools in the Detroit Community District are working to make literacy a civil right for their city. After studying The Universal Declaration of Human Rights through the EL Education K-5 Language Arts curriculum, they'll apply their knowledge to building and painting Little Free Libraries, hosting a book drive to stock them, and donating them to deserving local aid organizations.

Chicago, IL: Polaris Charter Academy

Polaris Charter Academy Bwd

Students from kindergarten through 8th grade conduct research, engage partners, and complete community-improvement projects to address the abandoned properties and disinvestment surrounding their school.

Bend, OR: Realms High School

Realms High School homelessness presentation invite

Tenth-graders advocate for humane and thoughtful treatment of the people living in a homeless encampment near their campus. Their "Power and Privilege" expedition culminates in students presenting a well-researched action plan to local agencies and to the community during an unveiling and donation drive.

Sturbridge, MA: Old Sturbridge Academy Charter Public School

Old Sturbridge Bwd 2018

Students lead a community-wide tree planting, starting on their own campus with a ceremony and celebration. Then, students spread out to other district communities to perform identical plantings throughout the region.

Muncie, IN: Inspire Academy

Inspire Academy students walk outside

Students help clean up the polluted White River as part of an expedition titled "Sustaining Ecosystems," based on the EL Education Language Arts curriculum texts, "A World Without Fish" and "Flush."

Alpharetta, GA: Amana Academy

Amana Academy Bwd18

Younger students beautify community spaces by creating seed pods, bird feeders, and decorative planters; older students work to combat flooding at a local park and help build a tiny house for a local person in need.

Dorchester, MA: Codman Academy Charter Public School

Codman Academy student holding seedling

Older students partner with local organizations to address hunger and homelessness in Boston, while younger students create pollinator gardens at six sites in nearby Codman Square.

Kettle Falls, WA: Kettle Falls High School

Kettle Falls Bwd 2018 2

Students partner with the city of Kettle Falls, the National Park Service, and the Kettle Falls School District to complete service projects including trail maintenance, campground cleanup, and landscaping for the local library.

Kenosha, WI: Vernon Elementary

Vernon Elementary kids with care packages

Elementary students help provide for local children in foster care by creating "Sweet Cases" filled with blankets, activities, and stuffed animals. Their collaboration with Together We Rise, a nonprofit for Foster Children, helps children going to new homes.

Bemidji, MN: Schoolcraft Learning Community

Schoolcraft Bwd 2018

Students create first-aid kits for people experiencing homelessness as part of their expedition "How To Save a Life." This follows their study of CPR and first-aid training and research on how natural disasters and weather affects communities.

Check out all 100 student events that took place on Better World Day here.


More than 50,000 students, educators, and community members, and counting! These citizens are stepping up to serve their communities. With so many involved in one day of service, imagine the impact 1,000,000 EL students have had every day throughout 25 years of "getting smart to do good."

Better World Day in Flint, Michigan: A Catalyst for Contribution (Subtitled) from EL Education on Vimeo.

In the News

Better World Day caught fire last year!  See highlights of 2019 media coverage from across the country:

Better World Day in Portland, Maine: A Higher Purpose from EL Education on Vimeo.