iEARN programs around the world team up on Global Connections 2.0 initiative
iEARN programs in the Middle East, North Africa, and the United States will be teaming up over the next two years in the Global Connections 2.0 program. This virtual exchange program, designed and funded by the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs, focuses on developing leadership and technology skills for teachers and youth to explore global issues through online, project-based collaboration.
Through Global Connections 2.0, teachers and students will expand their computer literacy skills, gain a deeper understanding of other countries’ cultures, and develop their leadership skills, giving them tools to make a difference in their home communities.
"This reciprocal exchange will enrich our students’ lives through globally minded leadership development,” noted Kahraman Arafa, iEARN-Palestine Coordinator. “Our educators and youth will benefit from the opportunity to exchange ideas around youth empowerment and free expression with partner educators and youth in the United States and other countries.”
As part of the project, iEARN will collaborate with the Buck Institute for Education (BIE) to develop cutting-edge tools and resources in Arabic and English to facilitate teachers’ use of Project Based Learning around global themes. In fostering digital dialogue, the Global Connections 2.0 program will provide professional development opportunities to 300 teachers including trainings, online courses, and a master trainer workshop at the 2013 iEARN Annual Conference in Doha, Qatar.
Since 2000, the State Department’s Global Connections and Exchange (GCE) Program has supported collaboration and online linkages among students, educators, and community youth leaders from U.S. and overseas secondary schools and youth organizations. Virtual exchange offers meaningful cross-cultural exchange opportunities to students otherwise unable to participate in physical study abroad programs.