As West Virginians attempt to meet the demands of the 21st century, school systems must ensure that students are prepared to live in a diverse society and succeed in a global economy. For students, international education means learning about the history, geography, literature and arts of other cultures and the importance of learning a second language.
If we want our children to compete globally, they should be aware and learn of the different cultures of the world, said State Schools Superintendent Steve Paine. I encourage all schools throughout the state to participate in International Education Week.
Teachers are encouraged to invite international guest speakers or speakers of other languages to their classrooms, which could be a parent, community member or a foreign exchange student. Teachers could incorporate foreign languages into their classroom throughout the week or enhance reading skills through selections by a foreign author or about other cultures. Last year, students studied currency conversions, foods and different artists, such as Picasso and Monet.
Schools across the state are encouraged to publicize their commemorative activities. The first 20 schools that submit an on-line summary of activities will receive complimentary international education resource materials.
For more information about International Education Week, contact Amelia Davis Courts, WVDE Executive Director for International Schools & English as a Second Language, at (304) 558-2691, or visit http://wvconnections.k12.wv.us/internationalweek.html.