Daniel Sadowsky is on the education team at the U.S. Fund for UNICEF.
We’ve heard these two five-word sayings any number of times to justify everything from funding public broadcasting to buying the latest Little Genius toy for our children. They’ve also been used to promote global education in our public schools. But they can be hollow phrases without substantial educational practices to back them up.
At TeachUNICEF, we are all about substance, and recently we’ve been able to support three schools in making an impact in the field of global education.
|U.S. Fund for UNICEF/2011/Sadowsky|
|Students at Warren Prep Academy hear about UNICEF’s life-saving work and education as a right of all children in the world.|
The Warren Prep Academy is a small primary school in Brooklyn’s Bedford-Stuyvesant neighborhood, made famous in many Spike Lee films. Not nearly as famous is the nurturing community of learners inside this school’s walls. Guidance counselor Rasheeda Brown believes in the two aforementioned five-word phrases, and she organized a career fair to give them substance.
TeachUNICEF attended and brought the global education angle to a point made by the remarkably wide range of career areas profiled: that they are going to have to work with all kinds of people as they embrace their tomorrow.
On the other end of the K-12 spectrum is what brought TeachUNICEF to Ramapo High School in Franklin Lakes, NJ.
Principal Louis Moore wanted to give his seniors more than just a diploma come summer. Ramapo’s Senior Seminar Day featured a high-impact presentation on seizing opportunities, followed by breakout sessions by adults from the “real world” on topics ranging from personal wellness to financial responsibility. I was there to speak about the importance of being globally competent, the global trends likely to emerge in their early adulthood, and how they may make an impact by taking action. It was a day of substance for these seniors rapidly approaching graduation.
The sophomores at New Canaan (CT) High School engaged in a few weeks of substantive global education recently, culminating in a simulation activity run by the school’s Model UN Club. As a former model UN adviser, I would assert that having students step into the shoes of another country’s diplomat and negotiate with other role-players to solve pressing world problems is one of the most powerful educational methodologies around.
I was deeply honored to give the event’s keynote speech, a reminder about the real-world application of the solutions the students would be negotiating. If you’re on Facebook, you can see a video clip of my speech.
The educators in these three examples all believe that children are both our present and our future, and they demonstrate it by helping their students project what their entrance to adulthood will look like. They believe that the world is getting smaller, and they strive to make their students into globally-competent lifelong learners. And TeachUNICEF is proud to help them make a substantial impact in their global education efforts.
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