Reimagining Global Collaboration
Many teachers are finding some well-deserved time to recharge and reflect after another tumultuous school year. For so many of us, the past few months have brought – along with an unprecedented overuse of the word “unprecedented” – remarkable challenges as well as transformative opportunities to learn and reimagine existing systems. At times, the pace of this change has been dizzying. And at this point, many of us just Need. To. Slow. Down.
For teachers, reflection is a natural part of the summer break. John Dewey reminded us that we don’t learn from experience but from our reflection on experience. And as we have explored new “probletunities” in the “coronaverse,” we have realized that we need each other more than ever to help reflect and to make sense of our changing world. We need family, friends and colleagues around the world to co-construct this new reality: to understand how we will teach, how we will organize our schools, and how we will relate to each other as humans.
While many of us just want to sit down face-to-face with a friend for a conversation over a cup of coffee, we are also grateful for new ways for technology has kept us connected over the past year. At WIDA, we are building this community and trying to leverage our global learning network to connect, co-create and re-imagine together. This includes connecting educators across the WIDA Consortium and the WIDA International School Consortium. In the past year, teachers have crossed global boundaries to participate with each other in virtual learning, and have shared strategies from around the world for teaching students in hybrid and online environments. Increasingly, educators are blending multiple experiences working with WIDA in different contexts. For example, this month’s WIDA Featured Educator, the amazing Maja Flom, has worked with WIDA in Minnesota, China and Peru.
Dig into this month’s newsletter to learn about new opportunities for continued online professional learning, including the WIDA eConference, new webinars and two new cohorts of the Stretching Your Coteaching course. And don’t miss next month’s issue when we’ll share details about the upcoming year-long WIDA Global Community of Practice. We hope you’ll join us, and until then we wish you a restful, safe and healthy summer.
Jon Nordmeyer, WIDA International Programs director
*Igbo: ultimately we will meet again