Apply to Join
Jul 8, 2015

School-2-School finishes the year with a flourish

Ms. Dixon teaches in Ramallah
Ms. Dixon teaches in Ramallah

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your continuing support of America’s Unofficial Ambassadors and the School-2-School initiative! In this past quarter, School-2-School reached new heights in bringing together students and teachers from across the globe and providing opportunities for virtual exchange as well as in-person trainings.

Below, please find an update on our four 2014/15 partnerships:

  • Ms. Andi Webb of Alderman Road Elementary School in Fayetteville, North Carolina traveled to the Sukma Bangsa in Aceh, Indonesia. She observed Sukma Bangsa teachers in the classroom and then conducted trainings on classroom management and taught English language to elementary, middle, and high school classes. As a highlight of Ms. Webb’s volunteer service, she conducted a training for more than 100 teachers from several area schools on teaching English as a second language, lesson planning, and classroom management. Some of the participating teachers came from more than three hours away for the session.
  • Ms. Asante Johnson and Ms. Tanesha Dixon of Wheatley Education Campus in Northeast Washington DC traveled to the Arab Evangelical School in Ramallah to teach English and to train AEES teachers in a number of disciplines. Ms. Johnson and Ms. Dixon conducted five workshops on teaching science to students at various reading levels, curriculum planning, lesson planning, using technology in the classroom, and teaching ESL and language arts. They also hand-carried a couple hundred elementary and middle school level English language books that students at Wheatley donated to the AEES library.
  • Middle and High School students at the Cardozo Education Campus in Northwest Washington DC and The Carter Academy in rural Bangladesh continued to exchange “pen pal” letters as part of a unique English Language Learning exchange. Students in both schools are studying English as the Cardozo students are part of a special program for new immigrants to the United States. Students exchange individual letters where they correspond about their interests and apply the reading and writing skills that they are learning in their classrooms. Mr. Chris Obermeyer will travel to The Carter Academy in late July to teach English, conduct TESOL trainings as well as trainings on incorporating community projects into science classes.
  • Mr. Eric Northard’s Grand Rapids High School students in Grand Rapids Minnesota completed their series of skype dialogue sessions with Moroccan High School students in the slums of Casablanca at the Sidi Moumen Cultural Center. As part of an after-school program in Casablanca, Moroccan youth engaged in this series of structured dialogues with their counterparts in Minnesota about youth participation, diversity, youth mobility and migration, planning for the future, and technology. Mr. Northard has integrated these dialogues into his world geography class as well as the after-school clubs that he advises. One of the Moroccan participants, a 17-year old young man, explained that he liked the dialogues because they helped him to improve his English and “we learned from them how to accept other people who have different religions and different ideas.”

Each of these School-2-School partnerships costs between $5,000 to $15,000 to build and implement. The 2014-15 program will come to an end this summer and has impacted hundreds of young people in the United States as well as in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Morocco, and the Palestinian Territories. All of your investments added up to change today and seeds for greater change tomorrow. Thank you again for your support!

Please donate today to support our program for the 2015-16 school year! We will have more information about how the program will expand in our next report.

Best,

Ms. Johnson and Ms. Dixon arrive at AEES
Ms. Johnson and Ms. Dixon arrive at AEES
A letter from Bangladesh
A letter from Bangladesh
Students at Sidi Moumen in Casablanca
Students at Sidi Moumen in Casablanca
Ms. Webb with students in Aceh
Ms. Webb with students in Aceh
AEES students in Ramallah
AEES students in Ramallah
Jun 22, 2015

A Summer of Service Begins

A rural shepherding village in Morocco
A rural shepherding village in Morocco

At the end of May, our unofficial ambassadors arrived in Morocco, Tajikistan, and Zanzibar to begin their summer service internships. From Arizona State to The College of New Jersey, our summer service interns will be representing six different colleges or universities and eight different cities as they do things like teach French to children in a shepherding village outside of Ifrane, Morocco; support women’s empowerment initiatives in Stone Town, Zanzibar; and teach English to university students in Dushanbe, Tajikistan. Together, our summer service interns will do more than 1500 hours of direct volunteer service! They will share their experiences with their communities – from the Bronx, New York to Greenville, South Carolina – and with you too, as they blog about what they are doing, who they are meeting, and the difference they are making together. To read about the services and experiences of our Summer Service Interns, please visit: https://americasunofficialambassadors.wordpress.com/

Below, please find the bios of each of our Summer Service Interns:

Bethlehem Belachew, born in Ethiopia, is a rising senior studying Political Science and French at Furman University, in Greenville, South Carolina. In addition, she is working toward minors in Middle East and Islamic Studies, and Poverty Studies. Bethlehem is interested in a career in international development and will spend the summer teaching French in Tarmilaat village and English at the Azrou Center.

John Curran is a political science major at Washington College in Chestertown, MD. He is an Irish citizen and spent the majority of his childhood in New Hampshire and lived on the Caribbean Island of Dominica. After graduation, John aspires to seek a career in diplomacy and human rights advocacy. He is volunteering at an internet governance NGO in Dushanbe this summer.

Samantha Falvey is a senior from New Jersey majoring in History at the College of New Jersey with experience in American Sign Language and Arabic. When Sammi graduates, she dreams of pursuing her career as a history professor. This summer she will spend her summer in Tajikistan, teaching English at the Tajiki Institute of Languages.

Alexandra Green is a rising sophomore at Washington College who is originally from Collegeville, Pennsylvania. At Washington College, she is a double major in International Studies and Business Management, and a French minor; upon graduation, she hopes to work abroad in the field of women’s empowerment.  In her free time, she enjoys running, volunteering, and participating in Model United Nations. This summer, she is teaching French in the village of Tarmilaat and English at the Azrou Center in Morocco.

Brieanna Griffin is a rising senior at Barrett, the Honors College at Arizona State University concurrently majoring in Global Studies and Anthropology. She is also working on a minor in Arabic Studies and certificates in Islamic Studies and TESOL. After graduation, she would like to teach English in the Arab world and then attend graduate school. She hopes to find work in the field of diplomacy after graduate school.  This summer, she will be living in Stonetown, Zanzibar and teaching English and science at a public school. She is very excited to develop her teaching skills further, learn about the history and practice of Islam in Zanzibar, as well as develop life-long friendships with Zanzibaris.

Rob Handerhan is from Woodbridge, New Jersey and a senior History major at The College of New Jersey (TCNJ) with a specialization in the History of the Islamic World and a minor in Arabic. Rob is interested in pursuing graduate studies, but first hopes to travel as much as possible as well as to work for a non-profit organization that is committed to both combating Islamophobia in America and to building peace and cross-cultural understanding worldwide. In his spare time, Rob studies Arabic and Persian and enjoys juggling and performing with the TCNJ Circus Club. This summer, he will be teaching English at the Bactria Cultural Center in Dushanbe, Tajikistan as well as working at IRODA, the only center for children with autism in Tajikistan.

Katrina Marks is a rising senior at Villanova University where she studies Communication, Humanities, and Chinese. She comes from Kent City, Michigan and has travelled throughout Europe and China. She loves to travel and to write about her experiences, and hopes to continue this after graduation by seeking a graduate program in Public History and Cultural Heritage abroad. This summer, she will intern at the Forum for African Women Educationalists in Stone Town, Zanzibar while also conducting research for her senior thesis on the collective memory of the East African Slave Trade at Christ Church Cathedral.

Amaris Prince is a sophomore studying English and Education at Guilford College. In her free time, she enjoys singing, dancing and working with kids. When Amaris graduates, she would like to volunteer with Peace Corps or complete a research project through the Fullbright Program. She would then like to work in higher education or in government on education policy. This summer she will be interning with America’s Unofficial Ambassadors teaching English at the Bactria Cultural Center and the Tajik Institute of Languages.

Our unofficial ambassadors to Tajikistan
Our unofficial ambassadors to Tajikistan
Zanzibari students make their way to school
Zanzibari students make their way to school
Mar 24, 2015

2015 School-2-School Expands to Four Partnerships!

Cardozo students at work in Washington DC
Cardozo students at work in Washington DC

Dear Friends,

Thank you for your continuing support of America’s Unofficial Ambassadors and the School-2-School initiative! As we head into spring, we are pleased to announce that our School-2-School program has expanded to four partnerships. From Minnesota and Morocco to Washington DC and Ramallah, elementary, middle, and high school students are learning from and about each other through School-2-School.

Below, please find an update on our ongoing partnerships:

  • Elementary school students at Alderman Road in Fayetteville, North Carolina and Sukma Bangsa in Aceh, Indonesia are skypeing with each other on a bi-weekly basis. In early April, instructional coach Ms. Andi Webb will travel to Aceh to volunteer for a week. She will conduct training workshops for teachers on classroom management, phonics and early reading skills, and mentoring. Ms. Webb will bring with her donated manuals, student workbooks, and CDs from her school to support teaching English as a Second Language. She will also seek to learn from her Indonesia counterparts ways in which they empower their students to take responsibility for themselves and completing their assignments.
  • Middle school students in at Wheatley Education Campus in Northeast Washington DC and at the Arab Evangelical School in Ramallah are using the “Edmodo” platform to conduct a virtual exchange. They’ve started their exchange by learning about each other’s respective cities, and their next step will be to take up the subject of migration, part of Wheatley’s social studies curriculum. Participating in these migration lessons will help to build the Palestinian students’ English skills while they share their own and their families’ experiences. In late April and early May, STEM teacher Ms. Asante Johnson will lead a 3-person delegation of Wheatley teachers to Ramallah to conduct classes for students in English and Social Studies as well as training workshops for STEM teachers.
  • Middle and High School students at the Cardozo Education Campus in Northwest Washington DC and The Carter Academy in rural Bangladesh are engaged in a unique English Language Learning exchange. Students in both schools are studying English as the Cardozo students are part of a special program for new immigrants to the United States. Over the course of the year, students improved their speaking and listening skills as well as their self-confidence by filming videos for each other about their schools and their environment and then exchanging them with their counterparts. Students are now improving their writing proficiency by drafting letters that respond to specific questions and then sending them to a “pen pal.” Lead teacher Chris Obermeyer will travel to Bangladesh this summer to volunteer at TCA as an English language instructor. He will also offer TCA teachers models for conducting environmental sciences projects in their classrooms and community.
  • As part of our newest School-2-School partnership, Eric Northard’s students at Grand Rapids High School in Grand Rapids Minnesota are skyping on a bi-weekly basis with Moroccan High School students in the slums of Casablanca at the Sidi Moumen Cultural Center. As part of an after-school program in Casablanca, Moroccan youth are engaging in this series of structured dialogues with their counterparts in Minnesota about youth participation, diversity, youth mobility and migration, planning for the future, and technology. Mr. Northard has integrated these dialogues into his world geography class as well as the after-school clubs that he advises.

Each of these School-2-School partnerships costs between $5,000 to $15,000 to build and implement. Given the number of young people who are impacted in the United States as well as in Bangladesh, Indonesia, Morocco, and the Palestinian Territories that is such an incredible difference to make for a relatively small sum. All of our investments add up -- thank you again for your continuing support of this program!

Best,

 

5th graders in Ramallah present on Washington DC
5th graders in Ramallah present on Washington DC
Palestinian 5th Graders present their projects
Palestinian 5th Graders present their projects
 
WARNING: Javascript is currently disabled or is not available in your browser. GlobalGiving makes extensive use of Javascript and will not function properly with Javascript disabled. Please enable Javascript and refresh this page.