Rick Joseph, a fifth/sixth-grade teacher at Birmingham Covington School in Bloomfield Hills, MI, was named Michigan Teacher of theYear for 2015.
In 2013-2014, Rick participated in the Japan-U.S. Teacher Exchange Program for Education for Sustainable Development
, which was jointly funded by the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs at the U.S. Department of State and the Japanese Government’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology. He traveled to Japan to study how schools in Japan encouraged sustainable practices in students and he still keeps in touch with other teachers who participated in the program.
After the orientation, the teachers visited K-12 schools throughout the DC metro area as well as other ESD resource sites such as the
Smithsonian Science Education Center and the Washington Youth Garden at the U.S. National Arboretum. The teachers enjoyed learning about the programs being implemented in the U.S. and learned about activities that could be implemented in their schools back in Japan. Following a two-night homestay with DC-area residents, the 14 Japanese teachers traveled to San Francisco where they were joined by the 14 U.S. participants for a three-day joint conference focused on the collaborative development of ESD curricula.
In June 2015, the 14 U.S. participants will travel to Japan to visit Japanese schools focused on ESD. The two groups of teachers will meet in Japan for another joint conference where they will solidify relationships and collaborations begun in San Francisco.
The Japan-U.S. Teacher Exchange Program for Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) is sponsored by the Japanese Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology and the Embassy of the United States in Japan. The program is administered by the Japan-U.S. Education Commission (Fulbright Japan) and implemented by the Institute of International Education and the Asia/Pacific Cultural Center for UNESCO.
This year, Let It Ripple
, a San Francisco-based 501c3, will premiere two new films, The Adaptable Mind
and The Making of a Mensch
, along with new discussion materials, a more in-depth research hub, and a robust global conversation around 'character' from different perspectives -- science, education, philosophy, and more.
Click here to learn more about Character Day and to preview the films
's guest bloggers Shuhan Wang and Joy Peyton write about the benefits of study abroad for elementary and secondary school students. They also share their idea of a well-designed program which contains several ingredients for success.
Peter Bittner, guest blogger for Education Week
, explores an underutilized—and free—resource: undergraduate students studying abroad. How powerful would it be if they each committed to sharing their experience with one classroom?