Keeping Connected #2: A Memo to the Global Education Community

A theme emerged this week on social media here in the US: teachers are vital to educating our children. Has it taken a pandemic for society to realize that educating children takes thought, effort, training, and a way with children?!?! I am astounded that it takes a global emergency to wake people up.

That said, as many of us move forward in this brave new world, it is important to keep in mind, as educators and as organizational leaders, we need to lead with courage. Our kids and their families need us not only to teach content and skills but to bring comfort and joy in times of uncertainty. We will need to be creative, compassionate community builders as we work with families. Additionally, we will have to somehow address inequitiesin our education systems and watch out for the most vulnerable.

Judging from how many educators around the world have risen to the challenge of teaching in the age of COVID-19 in the last few months, I am convinced that educators have the necessary skillset. We may have to become, however, more agile in responding to the needs of others and that may push us out of our comfort zone. Again, perhaps it is taking a global pandemic to push educational innovation out of necessity.

As I noted in my last post, the professional generosity of educators has come shining through during the last few weeks here in the US and even earlier in Asia where the coronavirus first struck. All sorts of support groups are popping up on Facebook, and educators are sharing resources and posting ideas to social media using hashtags such as #covid19edu, #distancelearning, #distanceteaching, #remotelearning, and #remoteteaching. Teachers are sharing an overwhelming amount of teaching resources and remote learning opportunities. It will also be important for us to help each other sort through the abundance of materials that are so generously being shared.

Members of the Global Education Conference Network community have stepped up to share as well. Here are some recent posts that you may want to review:

If you would like to contribute resources to our community, post to our discussion forum. Resources for educators are welcome and I am particularly interested in listing specific projects for students and teachers. I prefer that initiatives be posted by representatives of the organization offering the opportunity so that community members can contact those representatives directly. Please also share resources on Twitter using the hashtag #globaled20.

Additionally, I have started a support/networking group for parents and educators who are preparing for online learning or are currently working in a distance learning situation. We meet daily at different times using the Zoom platform. All are welcome to join us and details can be found here. Meetings are streamed live and recorded on our YouTube channel, too.

For additional teaching resources, take a look at my curated global education resources and at this flyer with opportunities for connecting to the world.

Finally, the #covad19 crisis is being called as being as serious and impactful on the world as World War II. I’ll leave you with this quote from a great woman of that era, Eleanor Roosevelt. Together, we can do more and support each other as we move forward. Have courage!

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