Teacher Education Goes Global
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Lena Lee Course
Course Name: Elementary Social Studies
Syllabus: View Syllabus
Reflection: In this semester (Spring, 2012), I implemented the idea of Stanley and global economic inequality. My pre-service teachers made a Stanley with their group members and sent (or they sent the Stanley the other teacher from different states/countries sent to them). In doing this, they were required to connect a particular learning concept of social studies (e.g., culture, geography, or history) into the letter of Stanley. As for the global inequality, my students read and discussed a couple of articles and had an activity with me in class. At the end of the session, they were encouraged to rethink why teaching global issues of poverty or inequality is un/necessary in elementary classroom and rationalized their arguments in classroom.

As for the Stanley, it was difficult for me to fully and effectively implement in my class in spite of my preparation in advance. This is because in-service teachers in the Stanley website looked mainly for elementary classrooms, not those of pre-service teachers such as mine. In addition, I have 65 students which made the arrangement complicated. However, many of them expressed their favor in doing Stanley at the end. In particular, when they had their Stanley back, they could see its powerful feeling of "getting connected" and thus, they understood how effectively it would work for their future students. They found this idea of global connection through the Stanley very meaningful, creative and fun and would love to have the idea in their future teaching.
Comment

Lena, this project seems rather interesting, but I must admit, I do not know what a 'Stanley' is. Would you mind explaining that? Maybe we can discuss it when we meet in a couple of weeks.

Thanks, Jen Fisette