Global connections courses provide an incredible opportunity for students to connect with other individuals beyond their own geographical area and community. It is truly exciting to share and learn about others’ experiences, which are often quite different from one’s own. This is why there is now a growing trend of global classrooms in the 21st-century education space.
Today, more and more parents and teachers recognize the importance of cultural diversity. Technological advancements have made making connections across borders much more accessible. Through these experiences, students can become much more empathetic and be driven to impact the world positively.
In this guide, we dig deeper into the concept of global connections courses and why they are so important for the global classroom of the 21st century.
What are Global Connections?
In simple terms, global connections allow students and teachers to foster and maintain learning relationships with individuals other than those in their own geographical context. Such relationships then serve as powerful learning experiences for students to work collaboratively to resolve global challenges. With such connections, young individuals find ways to come together as one via a collaborative relationship.
Although technological advancements and the ability to connect with people around the globe have been around for years, people only now understand the actual benefits. Remote learning amidst the pandemic taught individuals about the numerous advantages of having online courses and global connection courses that connect students from various parts of the world.
Not only can young individuals connect with peers from across the globe, but they can also collaborate through project-based and inquiry-based learning.
What Do Global Connections Teach?
Students can enjoy an abundance of teachings through a global connections course. With such courses, they are provided with the opportunity to learn through, about, and with people of other cultures beyond their own local communities and culture. As a result, they can learn the following:
Young people can gain firsthand information on the traditions, customs, cultural practices, and languages of people from various geographical places.
Foster Intercultural Awareness
When students discover other cultures, they become much more aware of different cultures. This allows them to build more meaningful relationships with people.
Deeper Understanding of the World
The information students receive about different cultures is much different than what they could learn in their classrooms. By talking to other young students of their age about their experiences, they gain a deeper, personal, and more nuanced understanding of different perspectives, traditions, and world views.
Importance of Global Connection Courses
It is essential that parents provide their children with learning that is beyond the typical classroom. This is where cultural competence education, in the form of online courses, comes into play.
In the current digital age, young children will grow up to engage with others around the world, both personally and professionally. This is why it is imperative that they acquire the necessary skills to effectively communicate and collaborate with them in culturally responsive and inclusive ways. Global connections allow students to build these skills, such as empathy, intercultural awareness, inclusion, and intercultural learning.
When we give students the opportunity to connect with others around the globe, we allow them to understand different perspectives and ideas. They gain a fresh take into the experiences and thoughts of people from around the world. Such experiences can foster relationships beyond borders and allow students to appreciate the similarities and differences in various cultures.
In the 21st century, there is a growing need for people to become more receptive to diversity and understand cultures other than their own. Global connections help with exactly that. The improved understanding through such courses also allows students to raise awareness and learn to respect uniqueness, individuality, and diversity. Lastly, such connections can enhance social and interpersonal skills by enabling students to develop social awareness, interpersonal skills, and self-awareness.
How to Get Started with Building Global Connections?
You don’t simply want to build a classroom with students from different geographical backgrounds. You must go beyond that and foster an environment that helps them form meaningful relationships with each other. This takes time, strategizing, and practice. It is best if teachers first start off locally by pairing children with other students from a different district. This will help teachers to strategize easily and overcome any unexpected hurdles.
If things work out, you can broaden the geographic landscape to build more connections through your courses on cultural competency in education. You should also structure your courses to facilitate online learning easily.
In the growing diverse and culturally advanced world, the need for a global classroom in the 21st-century is rising. Students have to be more culturally aware in order to succeed in their jobs in the future. Help us on our mission to globalize classrooms and facilitate learning beyond borders.
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