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Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Global Partners Junior Educators to Visit London in May 2012

As a result of a competition among 26 NYC Global Partners Junior educators to win a trip to London, four New York City educators were selected for their excellence, leadership, and enthusiasm for Global Partners Junior throughout the 2011-12 program year. While in London they will participate in professional development meetings with their British counterparts and take site visits to London schools. Additional activities will include cultural visits to local landmarks. Following the trip, they will share their experiences at the Global Partners Junior end of year exhibition at Gracie Mansion on June 19, 2012 where all NYC Global Partners Junior educators will be honored.

The winners are Annette Bindert, M.S. 322, NYC Dept. of Education; Preston Coston, Al Smith Recreation Center, NYC Dept. of Parks and Recreation;  Danielle Goldfarb-Bedrick, Sorrentino Recreation Center, NYC Dept. of Parks and Recreation; and Jean-Marie Kennedy, P.S. 160, NYC Dept. of Education.

These educators were chosen not only for their students’ exceptional participation online and excellent multimedia projects, but also for their enthusiasm for bringing the curriculum to life and making real world connections through field trips and enrichment activities.

Annette Bindert of M.S. 322 said, “Global Partners Junior is an excellent resource for students to realize the importance of global awareness and become more involved in their global community now so that they are more ready to take part in it as adults later.”

“The curriculum has been invaluable to me as a teaching aid to help me guide my kids to rediscover their neighborhood and take pride in where they come from and have pride in who they are,” reported Preston Coston of the Al Smith Recreation Center.

Danielle Goldfarb-Bedrick of the Sorrentino Recreation Center commented, “Since our recreation center is located in an area of New York City that is known for its low literacy rates, this program has helped immensely by reinforcing vocabulary, reading skills, reading confidence and comprehension.”

P.S. 160 teacher Jean-Marie Kennedy said, “When I consider the geographical and cultural awareness that has occurred in my students this year, it's truly amazing.”

The four New York City educators will be accompanied by Anissa Bazari, Program Manager, New York City Global Partners, Inc.  Global Partners, the private, not-for-profit organization that connects the New York City Mayor’s Office to cities around the world, will cover the costs of the trip.  

This trip to London and other future such competitions incentivize educators to take on leadership roles, enhancing their students’ experience in Global Partners Junior throughout the year.  Professional development activities and classroom observations during such trips provide new teaching strategies and develop shared identity between New York City and international educators. These visits provide valuable in-person opportunities to exchange ideas about effective ways to implement Global Partners Junior in their classrooms. 


This contest was modeled on last year’s successful Big Apple Visit for international educators, which brought teachers from Accra, Dublin, London, Melbourne, Mumbai, Prague and Toronto to New York City. International educators from Copenhagen, Ho Chi Minh City, Mexico City, Mumbai, Toronto, and Warsaw will participate in the June 2012 Big Apple Visit.

Global Partners Junior is an award‐winning student exchange program that connects New York City youth, ages 9‐12, with students around the world through the internet. This unique program fosters global awareness and develops practical technology skills for middle school youth.  Students communicate online about topics relevant to all cultures using an original curriculum.  All students in New York City and abroad use the same workbook and access and share media projects, video greetings and research facts about their communities through a secure, password-protected website.  

This year, the program is offered to over 2,200 students in 32 cities, including 7 public schools and 19 after-school programs throughout the five boroughs.  The 2011-12 curriculum, “World Marketplace,” explores local business and the global economy.  For their final projects which will be exhibited at Gracie Mansion on June 19, students will create a business plan for an original product or service to be marketed in their communities and abroad.

Applications for schools and after-school programs to participate during the next school year are now being accepted.  The 2012-13 program will kick off in September 2012 with a new curriculum focused on theater production and design.  In addition, this July, Global Partners Junior will pilot its first summer program.  The 7-week curriculum “Living Cities” will focus on urban sustainability. This curriculum, which has been offered during the school year, has been adapted for a summer model.

Participating cities are Accra, Berlin, Bogota, Buenos Aires, Copenhagen, Cuernavaca, Dublin, Glasgow, Hamburg, Ho Chi Minh City, Hong Kong, Johannesburg, Karachi, London, Melbourne, Mexico City, Moscow, Mumbai, New York City, Paris, Prague, Rio de Janeiro, Santiago, São Paulo, Shanghai, Singapore, Stockholm, Sydney, Tokyo, Toronto, Vancouver and Warsaw. 

Participating locations in New York City this year are:

New York City Department of Education
I.S. 49 Berta A. Dreyfus 
I.S. 123 James M. Kieran 
P.S. 160 William T. Sampson

M.S. 172 Irwin Altman 
I.S. 204 Oliver W. Holmes 
C.S. 211 The Bilingual School

M.S. 322 Renaissance Leadership Academy

New York City Department of Parks and Recreation 
Alfred E. Smith Recreation Center
Chelsea Recreation Center
Jackie Robinson Recreation Center
Sorrentino Recreation Center
St. Mary's Recreation Center

New York City Housing Authority 
Beach 41st Street Community Center
Boston Secor Community Center
Butler Community Center
Carey Gardens Community Center
Drew Hamilton Community Center

East River Community Center
Penn-Wortman Community Center
Rutgers Community Center

New York Public Library
Bronx Library Center 
Grand Concourse Library

Mott Haven Library  

Kids World After-School at P.S. 269

Sports and Arts in Schools Foundation 
Champions Club After-School, I.S. 231Q 
Champions Club After-School, I.S. 125Q 

United Activities Unlimited
P.S. 18 Beacon

Carla Azar

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