Last spring, when students from The Cathedral School of St. John the Divine in New York City took Level Up Village’s Global Minecraft Builders course, they were paired with partner students at iEARN Pakistan in Karachi, and the result was extraordinary one-to-one global collaboration.
“They built a transportation system at Pakistan’s suggestion, a hospital that Cathedral organized, and even a collaborative flower garden, which required both classes to recall their point plotting skills from an earlier class.”
That was the opening question in a video message from a young student at the Innovative Minds School in India. Masha, a U.S. student at Fisher Island Day School (FIDS) in Miami Beach, Florida, walked over the class sink and turned on the faucet. “This is how I get my water,” she said.
Then the student in India responded that many people in her community don’t have that option. In fact, she explained, getting water was quite difficult.
“It was an eye-opener for Masha,” said Lynn deAraujo a second grade teacher at FIDS.
This cross-cultural exchange was facilitated by Level Up Village (LUV), which began working with FIDS in the 2013-14 school year as part of the school’s push to increase STEAM programming.
Nashat, a student at Pioneers Baccalaureate School (PBS) in Nablus, West Bank, recently described LUV’s Global Doctors course as “one of the best things I have done in my life.”
In the course, students learned about human body systems by dissecting a variety of specimens, including a frog, a grasshopper, and a sheep’s heart and brain – and shared their findings via video message with partner students in the U.S.
In her keynote address to the National Coalition of Girls Schools Conference (NCGS) this week in Richmond, Virginia, Reshma Suajani, founder of Girls Who Code, expressed her frustration at walking into robotics classes and seeing scores of boys and maybe one or two girls.
I get it. I have found myself frustrated by exactly the same thing, and that is one of the reasons why we work so hard to bring girls to the table through our global STEAM courses that give students the opportunity to collaborate globally on real-life issues.
To make Spanish truly relevant and exciting for students, U.S. schools can choose to pair up with one of Level Up Village’s Latin American Global Partners. LUV’s Pied Piper Engineering course is an excellent choice for this cross-cultural exchange for students as young as Kindergarten through 2nd grade.
What exactly are the 21st century skills children need to develop in order to become informed global citizens? This is a key question posed by parents and school leaders, especially in today’s world of shifting academic expectations, new educational standards and evolving technologies.
Westport Library’s award-winning MakerSpace will soon play gracious host to Level Up Village’s “Global Inventors” 3D printing class. The course takes place the week of July 27th and will be the first LUV course to run at a library. Libraries that sign up to run Global Inventors will each receive a complimentary Cube® 3D printer.