Hello Lucy !

Today we introduce Lucy.

Lucy Gray is someone who knows a lot about the very aspects of education that represent the future, global 21st century education if you like. She is a speaker at the TED conference TEDxNYED in March (click here for more details on TED & education). To us she represents – amongst other “lucyd” thoughts to brighten up our day – the Global Education Collaborative.

Lucy wrote recently:

“I”m in the process of preparing for several events and publications and your help is needed. Most notably, I’ll be speaking at the TEDxNYED conference in March on global collaboration. I’m tentatively focusing on the stories of the Global Education Collaborative and the Global Education Conference, and would appreciate input from members on how global collaboration has impacted their professional practices. This information will also help me think of ways to improve our community.

Please consider sharing with me stories of how the GEC has been helpful to you, or by how other organizations/projects have impacted your work. For example, the GEC has one member who created a project, posted it in the GEC, and eventually won an award. This member also found out about Education Beyond Borders through our community, and traveled to Africa last summer to work with other educators. Any stories along these lines, big or small, are welcome.

I’m also interested in hearing from you on WHY there is a need for global education (in the sense of developing global competencies in students) in this day and age.  …  There seems to be a need for those of us interested in this education niche to be able to succinctly articulate our global education vision; we need an “elevator pitch” when trying to convince others of the importance of global education initiatives.”

We want to offer our own answer and invite more thoughts and comments from you, either by commenting below or by writing to Lucy (elemenous@gmail.com) with a CC to schoolpal@parentalpal.org. Thank you !

The essence of Lucy’s question might be answered by a counterquestion.
One that has worked for us time and again, you can do this exercise with any age group as soon as they can read and write. This is the task:
Think of well known personalities you truly admire and make a list, if possible with at least twelve names, who stand for great achievements. Depending on the age group this list may have names like Mozart or Alexander the Great on it, perhaps famous scientists and philosophers, people who received the Nobel Prize or pop stars, you might see politicians and rappers, authors and athletes, artists and web pioneers, there’s no limit to the imagination.
And then look them up on Wikipedia or wherever you will find the information to this crucial question: “Were they nimble? Were they flexible and keen to move – physically and mentally – or are we looking at people who were unwilling to shift?”
Could we even find great spirits who had stayed in the same place all their lives? Folks, who had no interest in other cultures, countries and ways of thinking?”
And yet have great intellect and achievements on their scoreboard? Not likely.

Our answer will always be: you have to move to get the bigger picture, you need to look across & around & beyond to understand and appreciate. No matter who or what.
Particularly yourself in fact:  a clearly defined identity requires repeated self-contemplation from the outer perspective, followed by reflective thought from the inside.

Having said that: the author of these lines is only too aware how much we Europeans would benefit if we tried harder for the bigger picture too. We have good geographical knowledge and can put ourselves in a fair relationship to the rest of the world. But when it comes to relevance we would be well advised to think again. And perhaps act wisely and with foresight.

PS: An additional range of perspectives ought to be offered to promote a wide angled approach in learning matters. Please visit The ParentalPal.Weblog, in particular these two articles: “Abroad broadens the mind” and “Imagine you had never tried your favourite food”

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