World Class: Teaching and Learning in Global Times

World Class: Teaching and Learning in Global Times

World Class: Teaching and Learning in Global Times

World Class: Teaching and Learning in Global Times

Synopsis

How have school curricula been affected by the ripple effects of globalization? How do teachers and students attempt to understand their complex world? Most states require world teaching in some form, yet little is known about how teachers and students engage in this critical curricular area. World Class: Teaching and Learning in Global Times directly fills this need by providing a detailed, inside look at global education in three high schools. The data from the study, drawn from extensive interviews and observations, illustrate the daily challenges and complexities of global teaching and learning. Comprehensive yet scholarly, this volume: *raises thought-provoking questions for both theorists and practitioners; *addresses controversial issues embedded in global education and throughout the social studies curriculum, such as the tension between universalism and cultural relativism, the problematic nature of identity in classroom discourse, and the apparent duality of national and global loyalties; *connects issues particular to global education with wider scholarship in education; *examines the interplay of theory and practice in global education and, more broadly, the social sciences; and *provides an exploratory and provocative look at dimensions of global civics, with an analysis of the events of 9/11/01 and how they have shaped global perspectives about living as one planet. The book is organized in three parts--contexts, problems, and alternatives. Contexts allows readers to consider global education from multiple perspectives: teacher, student, administrator, community member, and scholar. Problems focuses on pedagogical challenges associated with global education. Alternatives provides reflection points that encourage readers to consider different ways we might converse about global teaching and learning. Written for scholars, practitioners, and students in social studies, curriculum and instruction, global/multicultural education, and related fields, World Class: Teaching and Learning in Global Times is an excellent text for preservice and graduate-level courses in these areas.

Excerpt

The challenges of teaching about the world led me to write this book. As a new high school teacher over a decade ago, I struggled to make sense of the world class that I had been assigned. While talk of globalization was rapidly increasing, I grappled with the globalization that was supposed to be going on within my classroom. How do I “cover” all that students need to know? What do they need to know? What kinds of materials can I use to teach about the world? How do I help students relate to places, people, and events in areas of the world with which they have little or no familiarity? These questions were not unique to my situation or my students, though I remember feeling they were.

I tried to deal with this sense of curricular isolation by talking frequently with colleagues who taught the world class. We shared lessons, went on field trips, invited speakers, and vented frustrations in developing our course of study. We were proud of our efforts, but were also critically reflective in determining what seemed to be effective and what simply did not work. We were able to develop reasonable answers to the questions raised initially, only to find new ones emerging. What is unique about this school context that affects global learning? How should my students negotiate civic obligations that are strongly national with ones that are global? How should we engage controversial issues? How do our identities shape the ways in which we see the world? I consulted the literature in global education and found a number of thoughtful frameworks, stimulating teaching ideas, and provocative debates about the nature of global learning. Lacking in the literature, however, was a variety of substantive accounts of how teachers came to address these problematic areas. This book is designed to address this area of need.

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