Working at the Partners in Learning Global Forum has been a real inspirational experience, thinking and talking about how to go beyond the tired old 19th-century teaching approaches, the "sage on the stage" (pardon my cliché).
We need to facilitate learning of 21st century skills, to get students' hands on the skills and technology they will need for today's and tomorrow's job market.
It's a tall order.
During the Partners in Learning Global Forum, I had the privilege and honor of working with a team of brilliant teachers who were all in Washington presenting their own projects that had won their local and regional competitions. We worked together to create a new project based on water resources at SERC, the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center.
"Where does our water come from, where does it go, and what happens to it on its way? Inspired by placed based learning in SERC's activity "It's All in the Watershed," students will learn about their watershed and analyze the issues, impacts, and problems in their own watershed. Student will then share their research with global partners who then look for solutions and collaborate to create awareness campaigns for concrete public action."
Teachers working on the project include Kelli Etheredge (Alabama, US), Wen-Ching Yang (Taiwan), Yogesh Sundoo (Mauritius), Sanjeev Taneja (Punjab, India), Daniel Mercado (Argentina) and Philip Benz (France).
Here is a mindmap representing the broad strokes of our project, which we intend to finish developing by mid-December, and implement with our students in the spring.