As an educator, one of the most important aspects of my job is to inspire students to love learning, and see learning as something that happens well beyond the walls of any classroom, school or textbook. The best way to achieve this is to model a love of learning for students (which isn’t hard to do if you really LOVE to LEARN), and to provide students with opportunities beyond content area and curriculum to be exposed to other people and places outside of the everyday circle of people with whom they normally come in contact with on a daily basis.
In my class, I have instituted #TravelingTuesday — connecting students each week to people and places outside of the walls of our classroom. We connect via Skype or Google Hangout with museums, professionals and places that students may not normally have the opportunity to visit at this point in their lives.
Through this, students in our rural New York school have connected with peers in classrooms as far away as Africa, professionals with the World Food Programme, NASA, MIT Media Center’s Open Agriculture Initiative, the National Park Service and National Geographic Explorers. It is through these connections that students are exposed to new ideas and perspectives which help to break down barriers and build a sense of understanding and empathy among the youth in our world.
Read the full article on inspiring empathy in students by Emily Graham at blog.ed.ted.com.
K-12 Education is a complex topic, and others found these selections from the Impact Giving archive from Giving Compass to be good resources.
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