The project will consist of a Cultural Research Program in Kaohsiung and a Professional Development Program in Taipei and takes place in July and August 2018. The project will impact over 200 US students as the US teachers will develop Taiwan focused lesson plans for their classrooms.
In 2018, there are two outstanding teachers engaged in this program. They are a third grade teacher Aimee Ferguson and Middle school teacher Tania Riccoboni. Prior to travelling to Taiwan, teacher-participants engaged in in-depth research on Taiwan and selected specific research projects that are relevant to their classroom teaching. In addition, teachers were provided with resources on Taiwan and trained on how to develop multi-media presentations on Taiwan using video cameras. They arrived in Taiwan on July 28 and during the first part of the trip, which lasts until August 5, teachers were in Kaohsiung where they engaged in in-depth research on topics relevant to the classes they teacher and that they have been investigating for several months prior to travel. Through the Cultural Research Program in Kaohsiung, teachers engaged in intensive learning opportunities directly in-line with the subject matter they taught and learned first-hand about Taiwan with the assistance of local experts. From August 5 to 9, teachers travelled to Taipei and engage in a Design Thinking workshop with Taiwanese teachers. Design Thinking is a cutting-edge pedagogy that aims to engage students in new ways of learning.
Aimee Ferguson stated about the program, “I have already begun sharing information about Taiwan with children and adults. I cannot wait to inspire people more with all of Taiwan's delights. This would certainly dial the dialogue up from local issues to consideration of world trends!” Tania Riccoboni stated, “Thank you so very much for this incredible opportunity to experience a part of this world that may not have happened for me.”
Following the trip, teachers will develop lesson plans that will be incorporated into their classrooms. In 2019 EngageAsia plans to bring a cohort of Taiwanese teachers to the United States and in 2020 plans to bring US and Taiwanese teachers to Japan in an effort to build an Asia-wide network of educators who can learn from each other and promote understanding through the Pacific Rim.
EngageAsia website : https://www.engageasia.org/