By Amy Hubbard
Senior Curriculum Designer at Knovva Academy
M.Ed from the Harvard Graduate School of Education
Everyone wants to encourage their students to be global citizens, learn about cross-cultural communication, and view problems from a multicultural perspective. But how can you implement that into your curriculum? We’ve made a list of five resources for lesson plans, ideas, and connections you can make to bring the world into your classroom.
First of all, it’s important to know why global education is so vital at the moment. The internet has made the world more interconnected, and education is evolving to the point where online learning may be fully integrated into the classroom curriculum. Soon, connecting remotely with classmates or experts from other countries may be the norm. As technology makes the world a smaller place, and schools serve more diverse students, sixty percent of high school students now believe that understanding cultures different from their own is more important than writing or math skills.
Data also shows that global learning encourages students to see the benefits of personally taking social action. It also gives them practice in critical thinking as they become aware of issues such as climate change, poverty, and clean water, and helps them consider how they can positively impact these global problems.
Another reason international education is important is that students and teachers realize that jobs are becoming increasingly international. Because of globalization, companies are becoming more diverse than ever before. Students need to be ready to take on globalization, and having more knowledge and experience with other cultures gives them an advantage both in college admissions and in the jobs they may have after high school.
For all of these reasons and more, it’s important to put global education at the center of interdisciplinary programs, instead of teaching it as an add-on to the existing curriculum.
Here are five great resources that can help you integrate global education into your classroom. These well-established websites offer lesson plans, educational materials, and resources that support students as they engage with complex global issues and sharpen their 21st century skills.
- Asia for Educators (AFE): This website, created by Columbia University’s Weatherhead East Asia Institute, was created to support faculty and student engagement, with world history, culture, geography, art, and literature at the high school and college level. http://afe.easia.columbia.edu/
- The Choices Program: Based at Brown University’s Watson Institute for International Studies, this program provides resources for curriculum development and professional development that focus on supporting high school students as they explore international issues and civic engagement. Their goal is to help students become global citizens. http://www.choices.edu/
- Globalization 101: This website is currently affiliated with The Levin Institute, a graduate institute of international relations associated with the State University of New York. Globalization 101’s goal is to challenge high school students to consider many aspects of globalization by providing information and interdisciplinary learning opportunities. Another focus is asking students to grapple with trade-offs and dilemmas facing policymakers. http://www.globalization101.org/
- Asia Society Partnership for Global Learning: Their stated goal is “to educate all students for employability and citizenship in a global era.” They bring together leaders and institutions from around the world to increase the number of K-12 schools that offer international studies in an effort to make sure young people can participate in and benefit from a globally connected world. https://asiasociety.org/education/about
- Global Dimension: This organization helps teachers bring global education to their classrooms by offering access to resources, case studies, and background information. This includes learning at home resources and links to other sites that offer global education materials. https://globaldimension.org.uk/
1. The Center for Global Education https://asiasociety.org/education/about