Globalism and Multicultural Competency Development

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You have seen many examples of our efforts to prepare our students to live and work with all kinds of people in an ever-shrinking global community. Much of this happens in the traditional areas of foreign language, social studies, religion, and community service—all of which are in the process of becoming even more rigorous and engaging. Additionally, you will begin to see EDS teachers integrate multicultural skills and lessons more fully into their daily classroom experiences. As one example, fifth grade recently participated in a global online initiative called Mystery Skype in which the class video conferenced with another classroom somewhere in the world (it turned out to be Winnipeg) and played 20 questions to see which group could determine the location of the other. This educational game integrates technology, multicultural education, and the critical life skill of learning how to ask good, productive questions. Our elective international summer trips are yet another opportunity for some EDS students and teachers.

Our newest initiative in this area involves our hosting a small group of Chinese students on February 3 and 4. We have arranged for the director of an English language prep school in China to visit our school with eight of his upper elementary and middle school Chinese students. They will spend two days shadowing EDS students and participating in the life of our school and community. This is a tremendous opportunity that might be once in a lifetime, or might be the beginning of a collaboration leading to even richer and more sustained experiences.

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