Thursday, December 6, 2007

Using Your Travel Vacations As Lessons

My husband and I love to travel so I can’t tell you how many videos or photos I have taken for my classroom. It also gives me a different perspective of what I’m seeing when I think about looking at places through my students’ eyes. A majority of my special education students will never get to go far from home so I feel it is important to show them what is outside of their world. Hopefully it will inspire them to achieve more, expect more, and want for more.

I took my video camera on a cruise once and taped everything I could. Showing this is like watching the Travel Channel except more personal. Believe it or not, most students are very interested in what teachers do during their personal time because it makes their teacher more human. I think this is so important when establishing a rapport with students.

Other times, I have taken loads of digital photos and showed it as a slide presentation. I took so many photos though that I saved it for the last 10 minutes of class each day until I showed them all. The kids really worked hard so they could watch the show because if they didn’t finish, I moved them to a spot where they couldn’t see the photos.

A lot of times we come across people of different cultures and this is a great way to open up a discussion about that culture. Many people love to tell me about their culture so I learn a lot in the process. When I share this information with my students, they feel that I’m learning right along with them! I feel that the more we expose these students to different cultures so they understand them better, there will be less prejudice in the world. Prejudice comes from ignorance so education is the key.

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