International Exchange Programs & Project-Based Learning Opportunities

Educator Exchange Programs: These programs provide educators with the opportunity to experience another culture, education system, and way of looking at the world. All information taken from program’s website. Some are completely free to educators who are successful applicants, some come with stipends to cover most of the cost, and some have a cost to the participant.

  • Keizai Koho Teacher Fellowship: The Fellowship allows teachers to learn first hand about contemporary Japanese society and enhance their classroom teaching of global perspectives
  • Korean Studies Fellowship: The objective of the program is to provide a general overview of Korea, past and present. All the expenses of the participants will be covered, including round-trip international airfare, accommodations, and meals.
  • Japan-U.S. Teacher Exchange Program for Education for Sustainable Development: a fully-funded opportunity to travel to Japan to learn about ESD efforts and strengthen ESD curricula in both countries. ESD is “a vision of education that seeks to balance human and economic well-being with cultural traditions and respect for the earth’s natural resources,” according to the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).
  • Toyota International Teacher Programs: an international professional-development opportunity for U.S. secondary school teachers focusing on environmental stewardship and global connectedness.
  • Transatlantic Outreach Program: to promote education about Germany, to encourage cross-cultural dialogue, and to provide the opportunity for North American social studies educators to experience Germany in person.
  • Teaching Excellent & Achievement Program (TEA): brings outstanding secondary school teachers from around the globe to the United States to further develop expertise in their subject areas, enhance their teaching skills, and increase their knowledge about the United States. The program also brings US secondary school teachers to the home schools of international alumni to collaboratively develop workshops and share best practices. International alumni are eligible to apply for small grants to implement self-designed projects that benefit their home schools and communities.
  • Educators Visiting Educators: EducatorsAbroad (EA) is a worldwide network of educators through which educators are offered from almost anywhere in the world the opportunity to visit and partner with a colleague working in another geographic, social, cultural, economic, and or political environment.
  • Teachers to Teachers: the program aims to recognize the excellence and commitment of secondary school teachers and teacher-trainers in a broad range of subjects by providing U.S. based professional development seminars, practical classroom-learning opportunities, and preparation to conduct post-program professional development workshops for colleagues in Russia.
  • Overseas Practicum for Experienced Teachers: Indiana University and the Foundation for International Education have joined forces to provide experienced teachers with 3- or 4-week “teaching practicum” placements in several overseas nations.
  • AACE Teacher Exchange: Teachers live in a Russian teacher’s home and have a teaching experience in the host teacher’s Russian school. Visits to Russia are scheduled for the Fall. A reciprocal visit with Russian teachers coming to the U.S. for the same group would be in the Spring.
  • Fulbright-Hays Seminars Abroad Program: The program provides short-term study and travel seminars abroad for U.S. educators in the social sciences and humanities for the purpose of improving their understanding and knowledge of the peoples and cultures of other countries.
  • Contemporary Russia Program: The American Councils Contemporary Russia Program offers both graduate and undergraduate students as well as working professionals an opportunity to study abroad in Russia and to gain new knowledge and competency in Russian area studies and Russian language. Contemporary Russia is the first American Councils program designed to serve participants at all levels of Russian-language proficiency, including those with no prior training in the language.
  • Teaching Assistants in Thailand: Perform community service for seven weeks and enjoy a summer like no other. Teach English and serve as a teacher’s aide in a traditional school or even tutor adults; assist secondary school health or physical education teachers develop programs to reduce problems in schools or highlight social/health issues; or work in a local hospital. You’ll live with a host family, make new friends, and become involved in community life while learning about the local culture.
  • U.S.-China Teachers Exchange Program: with funding from the Freeman Foundation, the Teachers Exchange Program sends American K-12 teachers to China and brings Chinese secondary school teachers to the United States.
  • Australia/New Zealand Educator Exchange: The Australian / New Zealand Educator Exchange Program matches educators from the United States with educators from Australia or New Zealand for one-year direct exchanges.

Project-Based Learning Opportunities: Many thanks to Tracy Watanabe for inspiring the following list. Some are ones I’ve personally used or have participated in or have watched colleagues participate in. Others are new to me, via Tracy.

  • Center for Innovation in Engineering and Science Education (CIESE): To catalyze and support excellence in teaching and learning of science, technology, engineering, mathematics (STEM) and other core subjects through innovative, research-based instructional strategies and use of novel technologies. CIESE collaborates with K-12 and university educators, researchers, policymakers and educational organizations to develop curriculum materials, conduct professional development programs, and research new methodologies to strengthen STEM education..
  • Educators PLN: This is a ning site dedicated to the support of a Personal Learning Network for Educators.
  • Flat Stanley: Most folks know about the global literacy and community project that engages elementary students and important folks in their lives globally. This website provides apps for digital devices to stream-line involvement.
  • Flat Classroom Projects: Vicki Davis is a phenomenal 21s Century Educator. Her flat classroom projects facilitate K-12 collaborations around the globe. Her goal through the Flat Classroom projects is help students and educators understand the power of true asynchronous collaboration with as much synchronous as we can get in. The concept of merging classrooms in excellence, collaborative learning experiences is our aim and we believe most of our classrooms are achieving that.
    • Flat Classroom Project – application deadline January 23, 2012  — Grades 9-12
    • Digiteen – application deadline February 1, 2012 for Digiteen — Grades 7-9
    • ‘A Week in the Life Project’ – application deadline February 15, 2012 — Grades 3-5
    • Eracism – application deadline February 30, 2012 for Eracism — Grades 6-8
    • NetGenEd – application deadline February 1, 2012 for NetGenEd — Grades 9-12
  • Global Learning and Observations to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE): The Global Learning and Observation to Benefit the Environment (GLOBE) program is a worldwide hands-on, primary and secondary school-based science and education program.
  • Global SchoolNet: GlobalSchoolNet and eLanguages have joined forces to offer educators iPoPP, a state-of-the-art, worldwide e-learning platform, for multi-lingual, project-driven collaboration.  iPoPP gives educators a supportive community and easy-to-use tools that embrace the constructivist learning methodology, project-management principles, and future thinking strategies.
  • International Education and Research Network (iEARN): iEARN (International Education and Resource Network) is the world’s largest non-profit global network that enables teachers and youth to use the Internet and other technologies to collaborate on projects that enhance learning and make a difference in the world.
  • NASA Education: While there are several projects to join from NASA education, many of their education & outreach activities are currently under sequestration.
  • Web-based Inquiry Science Environment: This Berkeley site is a research-based digital-learning platform that fosters exploration and science inquiry, as students observe, analyze, experiment, and reflect. WISE projects focus on collaboration and 21st century scientific skills. 5th-12th grades.
  • Buck Institute for Education: Don’t let the name distract you: This website has collected yet another incredible list of Project-Based Learning opportunities for educators. It lists projects for all ages and is broken down by grades, from elementary to post-secondary.