Saturday, December 8, 2012

Adventures in Global Learning

This fall in my Emerging Instructional Technologies course I have been introduced to global learning. I am in awe of some of the projects that I have found as we explored this concept in  education. We as educators have to find ways to meet the Common Core standards of education which has components of global education. The Global Learning Network is one place you can go to learn about ways to create and become part of global learning opportunities.
The one that I have had the great fortune to be a part of is The Flat Classroom Project. My classmates and I were offered the opportunity to judge the eRacism project, a global debate about world issues. The debate has been on the topic of global conservation of natural resources and how these types of policies affect relations between cultures. The debates have been very well done and I have learned a great deal from these students presentations. It is quite a responsibility to judge their work fairly, to put aside your own beliefs and concentrate on the rubric that was to be used for scoring.
As I worked with a lead judge that was located in Africa it was difficult to communicate on a real time basis, so our connections were made through email. In the first round of debates our team was to judge two different debates but one of the  groups did not complete their project. We were to have 4 judges on our team for this round. The lead judge and I were the only two that completed our judging by the due date. In round two we again were to judge two debated and once again one of the two groups did not complete their project. This round we were again to have 4 judges on our team and I was the only one of the four to complete my judging, I was then asked to record on the judging slide my decision on a winner of the debate.
I can only imagine the frustration the coordinator of this entire project must have been going through. The task of organizing teams and judges from around the world had to be enormous. Teams that sign up to be part of the whole project that do not complete their responsibility and then judges that do not show up to judge and/or are not timely in their responses, has to be extremely frustrating. I commend Eva Brown for her patience and perseverance in getting everyone and everything organized, from the training of team leaders and judges in the beginning to the live debate at the end.
My only regret in this whole process is that I will not be able to be a judge for the live event since it will take place during the school day.
This has been an awesome experience and I will look for opportunities to be a part of more global learning projects in the future.

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