We live in a world whose borders are shrinking. Our world is shrinking because modern transportation has allowed us to cross the oceans in a matter of hours. Media has also blurred the concept of borders--we are only one television channel click away from hearing news headlines from around the globe. The Internet has also allowed us to reach out to our neighbors across continents with the click of a button. Brands like Levis, Coca Cola and McDonalds are now familiar words in most corners of the Earth.
Thus, it is no longer possible to live as though we are on an island here in America; it is not possible to live as though countries outside our borders are not of importance. As Americans we are known to cultures throughout the world, and as Americans we owe the world the same respect to know its cultures.
Teaching our children to live in a global society should be an element incorporated into all aspects of curriculum.
Indeed, we have much to learn from other cultures, and in doing so, we also learn to better understand our culture and its challenges. By understanding global cultures, politics and issues, and becoming global citizens, our culture will ultimately benefit from lessons learned. While it is possible to incorporate concepts of globalization into various aspects of the curriculum, our focus here will be on experiences like foreign study, service learning and other overseas exchanges. Through these outlets, teachers and students alike gain needed perspective on the culture we live and work in.
We are so fully immersed in our culture that it is near impossible to look at it objectively. Yet, by removing ourselves from our comfort zone in traveling to new areas to learn about cultures different from our own, we gain valuable insight...