Children are loving, kind, giving and inquisitive beings who are often born into societies that do not encourage these traits. What is education’s role in developing a peaceful and sustainable future for them? Education is poised to effectively address the global challenges of deep inequality, poverty, ecological destruction, war, conflict, religious intolerance, racism, sexism and disease. It is essential to educate and develop independently thinking and self-motivated citizens in order for developing countries to move away from dependency to self-sustaining models of development. We must all actively and consciously strive for a peaceful and equitable future for the world’s children, rather than assume that this will simply happen. A New Global Education is a vision of what education could be when used to teach children to appreciate the sanctity and interconnectedness of all life.
A New Global Education was developed as a final research project for my MA in International Education at George Washington University in Washington, DC. A few years ago I spent several months at a Gandhian school for the poorest children in rural India. There I was able to witness the power of using education as a tool to enhance every aspect of a child’s life in the most challenging of circumstances. Gandhi envisioned the empowerment of each individual through education, teaching of life skills and development of the spiritual self. People are then more equipped to be active members in their societies. Gandhi is one of a number of educational innovators who challenged us to teach children not only what to think, but how to think and come to their own conclusions. I believe that it is important to remember why we are educating – to help people live a fuller life. This is why we need to look at the whole child and move education beyond simply training of the mind.
My intention for A New Global Education is to expand our idea of what education can be through the introduction of various holistic models of education that could prove useful and inspiring in the context of international development. Each topic in this site is introduced and explored and provides a number of links and resources. My hope is that this website will challenge assumptions and spark new thinking in educational practice and theory.
Love and hope,