Meeting in the Middle: Avoiding Equity Pitfalls to Build Culturally-Responsive Global Projects

Workshop Description

More and more teachers across the K-12 spectrum are looking for global partnerships for their students, ideally classrooms in other parts of the world that are interested in collaborative learning.  Students want direct engagement with their peers around the world, and creating opportunities for deep collaboration with other global classrooms can help students develop the kinds of intercultural skills they will need to become leaders of constructive change. 

As global education increases in popularity and importance in schools across the world, it becomes increasingly urgent that educators make intentional and thoughtful choices in order to avoid paradigms of inequity, exploitation and self interest which do more to hurt global relationships than help.  What does it mean to develop an international experience in which students see themselves as equal partners in global change? When we develop global partnerships with classrooms and communities around the world, how can we be more conscientious about the educational needs and curricular demands on all sides, so that we can develop mutually beneficial, culturally-responsive experiences for all involved? 

This session will explore a variety of strategies for developing equitable global projects, and for building the kinds of culturally-responsive relationships among teachers and students which help humanize the world and foster equity-oriented global competencies. 

Date: Coming Soon

Workshop Objectives:

  • Understand the causes of inequitable global project design and the rationale for culturally-responsive relationship building
  • Understand and see examples of the key equity pitfalls that can undermine global relationships
  • Explore classroom strategies for avoiding equity pitfalls, including how to incorporate culturally-responsive pedagogy into global projects
  • Explore examples of equitable, culturally-responsive global projects
  • Reflect on participants’ global projects, including open discussion of equity challenges and how they might be handled in the future

Presenter: Jennifer D Klein

A product of experiential project-based education herself, Jennifer D. Klein taught college and high school English and Spanish for nineteen years, including five years in Central America and eleven years in all-girls education. In 2010, Jennifer left teaching to begin Principled Learning Strategies, which provides professional development to support authentic student-driven global learning experiences in schools. She has a broad background in global educational program planning and evaluation, student-driven curricular strategies, single-sex education, student service travel, cultural inclusivity, and experiential, inquiry-driven learning. She has facilitated educator workshops in English and Spanish in Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Costa Rica, Honduras, India, Mexico, Palestine, Peru, Sierra Leone, and the United States; and has led teacher groups on professional development travel programs in Belize, Costa Rica, Peru and Cuba. Jennifer’s first book, The Global Education Guidebook, was published in June 2017 by Solution Tree Press.  

From 2010–2017, Jennifer worked as a consultant, workshop facilitator and teacher coach for a variety of educational organizations, including World Leadership School (Colorado), TakingITGlobal (Toronto), the Centre for Global Education (Edmonton), the Buck Institute for Education (California), the Institute of International Education (Washington DC), and the International Studies School Network of the Center for Global Education at Asia Society (New York).  From 2017-2020, Jennifer served as head of school at Gimnasio Los Caobos, a preK–12 project-based school outside of Bogotá, Colombia, where she also wrote for various Colombian publications.  Jennifer’s articles have been published in Independent SchoolThe NSSSA Leader, and The Educational Forum. She has blogged for a variety of forums, including EdWeekPartnership for 21st Century Learning, and her own Shared World blog. As a school leader, writer, speaker, and bilingual workshop facilitator, Jennifer strives to inspire educators and shift their practices in schools worldwide.