Introduction To OneBench & Global Collaborative Projects
This resource is designed to guide teachers through the steps of planning and conducting an online, collaborative project with classrooms around the world. You will be introduced to global, project-based learning and collaboration through the OneBench.
EXPANDING OPPORTUNITY THROUGH VIRTUAL EXCHANGE AND GLOBAL PROJECT-BASED LEARNING
Students are keenly aware that it is in their best interest to understand global issues, engage with their peers worldwide, and gain the sills needed to find employment in today’s global economy. Yet, while opportunities for international exchange are expanding rapidly in many countries around the world, only a small fraction of students currently have access to some kind of international experience.
Using the Internet and web 2.0 tools to provide connectivity, virtual exchange programs increase the number and diversity of students worldwide who have a profound cross-cultural experience as a part of their education. The global reach of the Internet has shown us that we can build local-to-global multicultural understanding of human experiences across content areas including social studies, science, math, languages, history, and arts.
OneBench is a global non-profit network that facilitates cross-cultural interaction, global classroom projects, and new learning opportunities online. Through OneBench, students worldwide make meaningful contributions to the health and welfare of the planet by exploring real world issues and working collaboratively with local and global peers to find solutions.
OneBench projects provide opportunities for students to research and collaborate with peers globally on themes that are important for 21st century classrooms such as health, environment, social entrepreneurship, empowering girls and young women, food security, civic education, conflict resolution and peace education, and literacy and education.
An OneBench project is a collaborative academic endeavor between two or more groups of students and educators in different parts of the world. OneBench projects take on many different forms, but most are rooted in the pedagogy of project-based learning. Most projects are process-oriented, but also result in some kind of end “product” that is shared between the participants. The projects are designed and facilitated by teachers and students in the OneBench network. All projects within OneBench can be adapted to fit participants particular curriculum and classroom needs and schedules. As education standards vary by state, country, and subject, there is no single model for project involvement.
In addition to connecting classroom education with local issues and meeting specific curriculum needs, every OneBench project must answer the question, “How will this project improve the quality of life on the planet?” This vision and purpose is the glue that holds OneBench together, enabling participants to become global citizens who make a difference by collaborating with their peers around the world.
The curriculum-based projects are housed in OneBench’s Collaboration Centre, an online platform that enables groups to make connections, participate in forum discussions, share media, and collaborate towards their final project.
The OneBench Collaboration Centre enables youth to learn with, rather than simply about the world, through interactive curriculum-based groups in which students are creating, researching, sharing opinions, and becoming global citizens.
This resource is designed to guide educators through the steps of planning and conducting an online, collaborative project with classrooms around the world. The guide includes nine modules to help you plan and develop a project experience for students. Each module includes reflection activities to develop your project plan and additional resources for you to further explore a topic.
You can follow the modules and activities in order to develop your project plan or reference specific sections to build on an existing plan. The modules will guide you through:
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