Monday, November 10, 2014

Global Learning and the Classroom

"Exposure enlarges the mind and gives birth to creative solutions for the betterment of the human condition"
Teachers must have a global perspective because we are a global world. Technology, trade and advancements have knocked down walls and have instead built bridges across the world. Additionally, a global perspective helps one to appreciate and recognize the diversity that is within their community.

And of course, as you value the diverse perspectives and cultures of your own students, bridges can also be built between students and teachers in a way that is instructive and successful. International travel grants students the opportunity to be connected to something larger than themselves. To be able to stare out on the ocean or see the Christ the Redeemer statue is to realize that you are a part of an international network of humanity that is capable of enjoying natural beauty as well as creating it. How can one build the next Christ the Redeemer statue if one's never seen it? Exposure enlarges the mind and gives birth to creative solutions for the betterment of the human condition.

The global innovation age is an age that is powered by freedom, creativity and exposure. In this innovation age, the currency is ideas and these ideas are best fostered in classrooms that honor the culture and potential of each student. Additionally, by exposing the student to different cultures and ways of thinking, the student begins to understand the responsibility he/she has to the community and the world at large.

If we defined the world as a mixture of cultures, one need not travel far to replicate it. If traveling beyond the borders isn't possible, perhaps a journey inward is first important. As an educator, you could get in touch with the cultures that shape you. Study their origins via the internet and multimedia projects/experiences. Once this inward journey is complete, maybe the next logical step is to see the cultures and countries that live around you. Exploring the cultures of students in your school will further serve as a microcosm of the global community itself. At its core, global education is mostly about exposing the traveler to lands, people and traditions that have their own back-story.

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