Last week, National Geographic hosted 90 educators from around the United States at the 2007 Geography Outreach Institute. The participants, which included members of the DC Geographic Alliance and coordinators for the Geography Action! and My Wonderful World programs, took part in a full week of workshops and lectures at the National Conference Center in Landsdowne, VA, exploring ways to incorporate Geography Action! and My Wonderful World into their classrooms and communities.
This year’s theme, "Asia–A Continent of Contrasts," introduced the participants to the geography of the continent, its environments, and cultures. As this article points out, giving students an international perspective is increasingly important so that they can navigate their lives with the knowledge required to tackle global issues.
Many of the participants have attended the Institute for years, some since the inaugural Institute in 1996, and, I must say, they are one of the most enthusiastic, motivated, and passionate groups of people I’ve ever met.
Despite the muggy DC weather, a rainy downpour, and a temperamental bus, this group maintained its positive energy. (And I heard tale they brought the house down at karaoke one night!) It was truly inspiring to watch them interact and weave ideas during sessions. Generous with their brains, their creativity, and their laughter, the participants inspired not just each other, but also the NG staff.
Here at My Wonderful World, we feel our message is in good hands with these ambassadors; and to the Geography Outreach Institute participants, thank you for your time and your passion!