More Than Pen Pals – Educational Programs for Global Citizenship

When I was in elementary school, one of the coolest things I remember doing was writing to my pen pal in Japan. Back then, we would have to wait weeks or even months for a reply, but to most kids, it was our first interaction with peers in distant countries, and we could share with each other our experiences and learn from one another. Today, technology allows for immediate communication between students from all over the world, which offer a wide array of opportunities to interact and grow together.

Global Nomads Group (GNG) is an international NGO that empowers youth to use social networking, webcasting, videoconferencing, gaming and group filmmaking to build an awareness of the world they live in, and foster dialogue and understanding amongst each other.

GNG’s educational programs are rooted in the four sustainable pillars – the four C’s:

  1. Connect: bring together peers from similar and opposing perspectives
  2. Collaborate: support them to work on projects and discuss issues pertinent to them
  3. Create: piece together media projects from what they learned during their exchanges
  4. Change: use the projects to promote change in their communities

One program GNG offers is a virtual exchange program between students in the US and peers in Africa, Asia, the Middle East and North Africa. The year-long program for youth aged between 12-18 builds on the 4 C’s and with the help of technology in the classrooms, builds increased “intercultural youth engagement and global citizenship via fostering awareness and mutual understanding between students worldwide.” Videoconference programs currently running include Youth Talk which provides interactive learning and cultural exchange through discussions and conversations between students 15-18, from the US and the Arab World, to expand perspectives and understanding.

PULSE, another program, is a weekly series that brings together students from around North America to discuss international issues such as the Japan Earthquake, Human Trafficking, and Earth Day.

If you’re an educator and want to introduce GNG’s educational programs in your classroom, click here.

Thank you Global Nomads Group (GNG) for making our world wonderful.

LET ME KNOW, REPLY BELOW: When was the first time you realized you were part of a much bigger world?

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