Our team focus this year was learning more about global education. Global education and competency will become an even greater priority next year. We had the great pleasure of attending the Think Tank on Global Education with Fernando Reimers. Veronica Boix Mansilla also showed up. It was incredibly fun working with the premier teachers in this field and nearly 100 other diverse educators from all around the country. It was critical that our entire team went, including our science and art teacher. Together we have determined that an interdisciplinary approach to global education would best prepare our students to be active citizens capable of making a difference. We wrote a manifesto of sorts and will continue to seek ways to work together to this end. Some models of global education that inspire us come from the Asia Society and World Saavy.
We began using the UN sustainability goals (watch this fun video from Flocabulary!) this year in conjunction with our Global Brief assignment and summit. We matched students with a Sustainable Development Goal then led them through a research and writing project to develop a Global Issue Brief. They were able to chose a specific issue of interest that fit within the goal. Here are a few samples of what individual students wrote:
We then hosted a Global Issue Summit which was an opportunity for them to meet with other students from other homerooms who had studied that goal. The groups met for two days and put together presentations that explained the goal, action steps, and connections to Quakerism. Our hope was that this event would reinforce the importance of collaboration in achieving the goals. Here is a sample presentation given by the group that studied Goal #14 which is Life Below Water:
SDG #14 Life Below Water
Many other projects support students’ global competency development throughout the year, including Mapping With Heart, Green By Design, and our research papers on alternative energy use around the globe.