The Edge

Connected Educators: ISTE CL’s Global Conference

March 18, 2024 ISTE Season 2 Episode 14
The Edge
Connected Educators: ISTE CL’s Global Conference
Show Notes Transcript

Join Georgia and Jessica as they explore the upcoming Global Conference with three of the lead team members Dr. Kaylah Holland, Cammie Kannekens, and Olga Kazarina.

ISTE's The Edge with Global Conference Team

[00:00:00] Georgia Terlaje: It's time for the edge, a podcast brought to you by it's the community leaders, whether you're a seasoned educator, a visionary administrator, or a passionate education enthusiast. Fasten your seatbelts because this podcast is tailor made for you. Get ready to embark on an exhilarating journey as our it's the community leaders take you behind the scenes and into the dynamic world of education.

[00:00:23] Georgia Terlaje: And the episodes ahead will unveil stories Stories from the front lines showcasing the relentless dedication and innovation that fuels the transformative field of education buckle up and brace yourself for an adventure coming up today. We've got three fabulous guests on the show who are going to discuss global education.

[00:00:43] Georgia Terlaje: I'm one of your community leader host, Georgia, I'm a TK five instructional coach and an educator of 35 years. And I'm here with my always favorite partner in crime, Jessica pack. Oh, thank you so much, 

[00:00:58] Jessica Pack: Georgia. You are my favorite too, darling. I'm Jessica Pack, a middle school teacher and an ISTE author, and I'm really excited for today's episode because we are going to deep dive with some special guests.

[00:01:12] Jessica Pack: About global education and the global impact conference. So a really great opportunity to have an amazing conversation we're joined by a few of our fellow ISTE community leaders But first let's just start off with our very good friend of the show Kayla Holland. Hi Kayla Hi, George and Jessica.

[00:01:34] Jessica Pack: Thanks so much for joining us again at The Edge. You've brought a few community leader friends along. Could you introduce them as well, please? 

[00:01:42] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Yes, absolutely. I had so much fun on the podcast the last time I had to bring all my friends. Today I've got Cammie and Olga here with me and we're part of the ISTE community leaders global, global team.

[00:01:55] Dr. Kaylah Holland: And we're just really excited to talk about our passion for global education and the global impact conference coming up in April. That's hosted by our ISTE community leaders. 

[00:02:06] Georgia Terlaje: Very awesome. We always, we always like to start out with asking people what's the origin story of how the three of you kind of came together with this project.

[00:02:20] Dr. Kaylah Holland: That's a great question. I think we're all very passionate about global education. And as community leaders, we are really tasked to dream big and create communities that we don't think currently exist. And so Cammy and I actually are partners on another community leader program called the coaches meetup.

[00:02:41] Dr. Kaylah Holland: And so we were already kind of working on that. And we're passionate about global education. And we said, how do we bring people together? Educators from around the world to really highlight incredible things taking place in, in just schools and education everywhere. And so there's about 10 of us on the global education team, as I see community leaders.

[00:03:03] Dr. Kaylah Holland: And we had a big meeting and basically did a call to say, if you're interested in global education, come to our meeting, join our, join our group. And that's how we met Olga. I had not actually known Olga or had the pleasure of working with her before our global teams. I'm really glad that I've been getting to know her and that she joined and we just kind of got together and said, what do we want to do?

[00:03:25] Dr. Kaylah Holland: How do we want to make an impact in global education in this virtual conference kind of. Was a big ambitious idea that came out of that, that we are making happen. We are putting it out into the world. 

[00:03:37] Georgia Terlaje: And before we kind of dive into the conference, I'm curious Olga and then Cammie, can you just, and Kayla, cause I don't think you said either, where are you, what do you do where you are and where are you?

[00:03:52] Cammie Kannekens: Well, I'll jump in there. And I was just going to add on to Kayla, too, that one of the things that I remember talking about at the beginning, when we started to have this idea of a global group is we also talked a lot about putting the I in ISTE. So, you know, ISTE being the international society we sometimes feel that the, the international part is lacking in it, that ISTE is maybe a little bit American centric.

[00:04:17] Cammie Kannekens: So I am Canadian. I'm from Alberta, Canada, and my role there is I'm a district wide instructional coach. I, I'm in a geographically really large rural district, and I, I go around and serve about 20 schools with really differing schools. Demographics and all sorts of things. So that's my role. Olga.

[00:04:37] Olga Kazarina: Hi, everyone. I'm Olga. Well, I originally come from Russia, but I have been living in Santiago, Chile, South America for the past nine years, and I've been working in the intersection of education and technology. So mostly I've been working for international schools as well as for different technology providers.

[00:04:58] Olga Kazarina: So I think global education really ignites my spark as an educator myself, who is not living in her own country, but who is connected to great peers around the world, including Canada, the States. Also, we do have East team members nearby, for example, practice from Argentina. And I think this is how. I joined also this initiative because I met Greta through probably loop.

[00:05:26] Olga Kazarina: She helped me and with my ISTE certified educators portfolio. And this is how we started communicating and growing our professional friendship. 

[00:05:37] Cammie Kannekens: I think all roads lead to Greta. I was just thinking that. 

[00:05:42] Georgia Terlaje: Like Greta is the central part of, she's like Cuzco in Peru, all roads lead to the center. Yes, I agree with that.


[00:05:54] Dr. Kaylah Holland: so I'm Kayla Holland, and I am the director of instructional technology and blended learning for break free education and I'm located in Charlotte, North Carolina in the United States. But before my time with break free, I lived and worked in Haiti. So I know what it feels like to be an expat. I know how important global education is because I.

[00:06:16] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Removed myself from a very American centric mindset and lived in another country for a long time and I think that's what really sparks my as Olga puts it sparks my passion for global education just because I've lived it but Greta is also a dear friend So I think all 

[00:06:33] Jessica Pack: roads lead to Greta.

[00:06:40] Jessica Pack: That's amazing. Thank you so much for sharing all those connections How is the global impact conference structured? It sounds like we're starting to make an elevator pitch for getting involved. Right? So how can people reach out and be a part of this great learning opportunity?

[00:06:57] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Yeah, so we're really excited. The Global Impact Conference, which is hosted by the ISTE community leaders, is going to be on April 27th. It's an all virtual conference, and we've already put out a call for proposals, and we have just really incredible sessions coming in, and we really wanted to be present in all time zones.

[00:07:18] Dr. Kaylah Holland: So we're doing a mixture of live sessions and prerecorded content. We're really trying to do content in multiple languages. So not just English our live content will be primarily English, but our prerecorded content will be in multiple languages and there'll be a registration link coming out soon.

[00:07:36] Dr. Kaylah Holland: And so you'll see that on our ISTE community leaders, Twitter page on connect. On any of our socials, if you follow us, we'll be, we'll be shouting it loud and clear and providing that link everywhere. 

[00:07:49] Cammie Kannekens: Because this is our, this is an inaugural conference, really. There's lots of pieces that we're putting together and building and it's kind of like, well, can we, can we do this?

[00:07:59] Cammie Kannekens: Well, are we able to do this? How can we do this? So we're, it's been interesting finding our way to what we're able to do. And so we're just, we're, we've got lots of answers now and we're just really digging in. And so, like Kayla said, those, those links and registration pieces will come out soon. 

[00:08:20] Georgia Terlaje: But isn't it so much fun to build something from the ground up?

[00:08:23] Georgia Terlaje: Like where you're not really following a model of anything. It's like going to be whatever you make it. I think that's really exciting. 

[00:08:31] Dr. Kaylah Holland: I agree. And I think it lowers the pressure, right? Because it's not something that's been done over and over and it doesn't really have a high expectation. It's just like, let's put something out, do the best that we can and see what happens.

[00:08:44] Dr. Kaylah Holland: And if it's, it's really great and people really love it, then we have a whole year to plan for the next one and make it even better next time.

[00:08:57] Jessica Pack: What outcomes are you hoping for from the conference? What would you like people to walk away with?

[00:09:05] Cammie Kannekens: Well, it is the first one. I think we have a really exciting lineup of speakers, and there's going to be lots of well known names, lots of people that have come through the ISTE community leader communities lots of well known EdTech friends, and so how does technology is kind of the, the thread that binds, but it's not necessarily the only way.

[00:09:28] Cammie Kannekens: The only sessions that we will accept. And so our focus while technology is kind of out as part of that will really be about global impact. And that's the title. And so what are things that different teachers or teams or schools are doing around the world and global impact can look so different depending on what your local situation is.

[00:09:51] Olga Kazarina: Yeah, I completely agree on that. I would also say I think one of the outcomes would be to elevate the educator's voice from all around the world because as I volunteered for EC live last year for a virtual part, I couldn't travel myself and as well as Some other educators around the world, they couldn't make it to US due to different obstacles.

[00:10:14] Olga Kazarina: So they would really like to share their expertise and to be represented. And we do think that this conference is going to give them that opportunity. 

[00:10:25] Georgia Terlaje: So for listeners that maybe aren't part of the global education world, what, what is the thing about global collaboration that makes educators better, that can really appeal to everyone and they should be a part of this?

[00:10:44] Cammie Kannekens: There's lots of ways to answer that. I think for those of us in North America, we have, even though, you know, there's lots of things that we would like to change about our school systems, or, you know, that we can always find something to complain about in education, we have it pretty good. And. I think one of the things from my perspective is what I would love for my teachers.

[00:11:07] Cammie Kannekens: I'm in a rural area, so my kids often haven't experienced the world very much. I would really love when they have a better chance to see what life is like, what students experience in other parts of the world. Just. What it's like to connect with someone who whose school maybe doesn't have electricity reliably every day or students who don't actually even have the Internet or don't even have computers, or there's just so many different things that can happen or school can look like in so many different ways.

[00:11:39] Cammie Kannekens: And so I think it's really powerful when our students are able to see it. what other students in other 

[00:11:46] Jessica Pack: places experience.

[00:11:52] Jessica Pack: Yeah, I do 

[00:11:53] Olga Kazarina: agree on that as well, Cami. For me as the international educator or expert educator, I think it's very important to connect with people around the world so I can see how they So for more or less similar problems, but with different curricula or in different school frame. And I think, I know that in US and Canada that there is a K 12 curricula, right?

[00:12:16] Olga Kazarina: Well, in Chile there is national one. There's also British curricula. So when I get in touch with educators from different countries, I also can learn how I can tackle the same learning objectives with my students, but in a different way. 

[00:12:31] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Yeah, and I would add that to that, that it's really a mental shift, right?

[00:12:36] Dr. Kaylah Holland: I mean, we are living in a very global world. And if we are, you know, real educators, we want to help our prepare our students for the world. They're going to live in when they start their careers or they go to college. And so how do you bring. The world to our students, you do that with global collaboration.

[00:12:54] Dr. Kaylah Holland: So much like Kami and Olga are saying, but I think it's really important to make sure that we are helping prepare our kids to work in a global world. Especially like coming out of the pandemic. Virtual calls became such a normal way of life. I don't know about any of you, but I'm on them all the time.

[00:13:13] Dr. Kaylah Holland: It's just a normal thing now. Zoom is a verb, right? We'll just we'll just zoom and be fine. So when we look at that in terms of our students, how are we preparing them to work in a global world? And there's also a huge Mindset shift when you prepare students for that global world, because when you like Kami saying, put them into the experiences of other people, you build empathy in what they are experiencing or able to experience themselves.

[00:13:42] Dr. Kaylah Holland: So I think that's a huge piece of this global education perspective is really preparing them for what's to come, but also building that empathy in where they are right now. 

[00:13:53] Cammie Kannekens: We also intend to have. When we, when we took our proposals, one of the questions on our form is, you know, which sustainable development goal does your proposal best address?

[00:14:04] Cammie Kannekens: And so, being a global being a global conference, we also want to really focus on those United Nations Sustainable Development Goals bring continued awareness to them. And often I think people connect through the common goals that they do have, or the, the. Sustainable development goals that they might be focused on or working on that often brings people or groups together as well.

[00:14:32] Jessica Pack: Kayla, I think you had mentioned that there's sort of a a central maybe theme or just an idea that you're kind of centering a lot of the the sessions around is there One that you could share with us 

[00:14:47] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Yeah, I'm I'm calling it a theme ish, right? Because we are theme is really global education. And so you'll see in the you know, post on social media.

[00:14:57] Dr. Kaylah Holland: It's really just global impact conference. But when you look at making a global impact, we really have this phrase. That's I make a positive difference in the world. And I think that's, you know, What we want our kids to do, right? We want them to make a positive impact in their world. And we don't want their world to only be their classroom or their school or their city.

[00:15:15] Dr. Kaylah Holland: We want them to keep dreaming big and really looking at, you know, everyone that's in in our entire globe. So that's kind of our theme ish. I make a positive difference in the world and, if you're following the ISTE community leader Twitter page or on connect, we've been featuring educators. And so you just saw Kevin's went up recently.

[00:15:36] Dr. Kaylah Holland: He's from Kenya, and he talks about making a positive difference in his world. And we had Mary Alice a couple of weeks ago, and she talks about. Her passion is digital citizenship, and she makes a positive difference in the world by just creating those programs and showing up every day. And so I'm really excited about that.

[00:15:54] Dr. Kaylah Holland: I think people make a positive difference in their worlds in so many different ways. And some people think, Oh, I'm not doing this big, huge project, or I'm not making this big, huge impact. And it's not really about that. I really believe, you know, small Impacts matter too. And it's these small little things that come together in the end to make a big impact.

[00:16:14] Dr. Kaylah Holland: And so I'm really hoping that people will take away that there. If they feel like they're only doing something small, that it's still making a difference 

[00:16:21] Jessica Pack: to someone. 

 So What are the challenges and opportunities of implementing global education initiatives in diverse educational settings?

[00:16:30] Cammie Kannekens: Well, time zones is always an issue. And so I've done some work over different years with schools in Africa. And so I have lots of friends in Africa and we, you know, we always plan to get our, our kids together and have a real rich experience, but there's that the time zones are just so off that it just doesn't work.

[00:16:53] Cammie Kannekens: We're never really in school at the same time. Now, technology makes lots of differences. We can use flip, we can do video recordings, we can go back and forth that way. So, so there are solutions, but often, like even just getting together as adult educators, finding the time zone piece that it's funny how that's always just a thing.

[00:17:16] Dr. Kaylah Holland: I think time zones are my nemesis. That's what I say. I have an extension that I can put in different people's time zones to make sure I'm always right. And then it's, it's rarely right. So I still struggle, but I would add to that. Kami and say language barriers are a big challenge because I know a lot of teachers really want the authentic connection of connecting.

[00:17:37] Dr. Kaylah Holland: My classroom in the United States to a classroom in another country and obviously a language barrier is going to be a huge issue. I remember when I was living in, in Haiti, I connected a French speaking Haitian class. I'm sorry, an English speaking Haitian class to a French speaking class in the United States.

[00:17:55] Dr. Kaylah Holland: So they were both new to that language. So my Haitian students were new to English and the students in the U S were new to French. And so it lowered that level of pressure. on both kids to be speaking a fluent language since they were both kind of learning that new one. And we used Flipgrid which it was Flipgrid at the time, Flip now, and they were able to have full conversations about their, their families and their hobbies and things they enjoy and things like that in those new languages.

[00:18:23] Dr. Kaylah Holland: And that was a really cool experience for both sets of students, but really thinking creatively around those language barriers is a real challenge. 

[00:18:34] Olga Kazarina: Yeah, I do. I would agree on language barrier. As in the school where I used to work, we were also trying to connect some Spanish speaking students from primary elementary school with some other students from U.

[00:18:46] Olga Kazarina: S. For example, and the language barrier was quite big, but also I think it's very important to emphasize the cultural difference, right? Because teaching is done in so many different ways. And honestly, professionally, I really adore the way Some things are taught in the U. S. like Reader's Workshop and Writer's Workshop, because that's not the way I was taught.

[00:19:07] Olga Kazarina: I was taught more to memorize and repeat, so it really affected, I think, the development of critical thinking. And it depends how students are taught, how much they can actually express their opinion, and how much they can do these exchange with some other classrooms around the world.

[00:19:28] Jessica Pack: So for boots on the ground educators who are currently in a classroom setting, how can they incorporate global perspectives into their curriculum effectively?

[00:19:46] Cammie Kannekens: Well, going back to the Sustainable Development Goals, the UN SDGs, I think for teachers who are, who would like to get involved with, you know, a broader global mindset, those SDGs are such a good place to, to dig in. There's 17 of them. And there are things that probably align with something that's already in their current curriculum or that their students are interested in.

[00:20:09] Cammie Kannekens: And so for educators who, who wants to have their students be more aware of the world and of multiple, multiple perspectives, those sustainable development goals, you know, pick one, pick two, but just dig in and get started, start researching look for ways that you can explore Connect with other groups, but even just learn about how that particular SDG is affecting your community and then other communities around the world.

[00:20:37] Cammie Kannekens: That's a, that's a really I think a really easy place to kind of get a handhold to start. 

[00:20:43] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Yeah, I agree, Cami, and I'd add on to that to say you can bring in a global perspective in a very simple way by just making sure a variety of voices are included in your classroom. So, thinking about the novels that you read, or the moments of history that you study, or the, you know, science science experts that you're bringing in to make sure they're really representing a global perspective to me.

[00:21:07] Dr. Kaylah Holland: That's a really easy way to add that in. So we're not. Retaining this mindset, especially for us in the United States. We're not retaining this mindset that it's only worth studying those people who are from the United States, right? We have such a rich global world, and we need to really study perspectives from everywhere.

[00:21:29] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Plus, there's so many different cultures in classrooms. We are very. Mixed culturally even in the United States. So really making sure that your content is reflecting the students in your classroom. It's just a really easy but really huge. 1st step. 

[00:21:47] Olga Kazarina: Yeah, I would certainly agree on that. Kyla. I think personalizing a customizing the content.

[00:21:52] Olga Kazarina: Is when I was an educator and we used some books from us on again, readers and writers workshop and my students that were mostly Chilean from Chile, they had some examples on peanut butter sandwich. And for them, it wouldn't make sense. So, of course, they had to adjust the content. And that was also part of the global perspective, right?

[00:22:13] Olga Kazarina: They learned that the, for example, in the States, people do. prefer eating peanut butter sandwich while in Chile they eat avocado with cheese and and bread. So that was one of the examples of the like kind of amplifying the the mindset about the the culinary preferences. 

[00:22:32] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Yeah, I think I prefer your avocado and bread to peanut butter and jelly.

[00:22:38] Georgia Terlaje: I would kind of agree with that too, but food is the great leveler. I mean, that's always a great place to start culturally. So anyway, yes. 

[00:22:49] Jessica Pack: Well, this has been such a great conversation. Thank you so much. so much for stopping by the edge today. You had mentioned that all of you will be posting reminders and more information as the time goes on.

[00:23:01] Jessica Pack: So if you wouldn't mind before we let you go, could you share with listeners, how they can connect with you specifically, and then also what community channels to follow. 

[00:23:14] Dr. Kaylah Holland: Yeah, absolutely. So I mean, my socials are at Holland Kayla, just my last name, first name, but you can follow us on ISTE connect.

[00:23:22] Dr. Kaylah Holland: If you're part of that program, especially the global educators page and the at ISTE community on on Twitter, it will be posted there, but my socials at Holland Kayla. 

[00:23:36] Cammie Kannekens: Yes, that ISTE. Community leaders Twitter page is very active and there's, we're always pushing out lots of great things that are happening with ISTE community leaders.

[00:23:46] Cammie Kannekens: My social handle is at Mrs. Kins on Twitter and LinkedIn more and more as well.

[00:23:58] Olga Kazarina: And I highly recommend following our group on Connect as we've been putting a lot of effort into that. And my socials are all good 'cause I book on LinkedIn and Instagram.

[00:24:11] Jessica Pack: That is perfect. Thank you so much. We really appreciate your time and your message. And as we're wrapping up this episode of the Edge podcast, we really hope you listeners also had a wonderful time. My name is Jessica and you can find me at Pacwoman208 on Twitter, threads, and Instagram. 

[00:24:30] Georgia Terlaje: And I'm Georgia Turlahi, and you can find me at Georgia Turlahi on Twitter or X or whatever we're calling it now, and also on threads.

[00:24:38] Georgia Terlaje: And you can find both Jessica and I at StorytellingSavesTheWorld. com. 

[00:24:43] Jessica Pack: On behalf of everyone at ISTE's The Edge podcast, remember to keep exploring your passion, fostering your creativity, and continue taking risks. All things that can bring you to the edge.