Education Through Education: Global Classroom
Global Classroom is a travel group open to any student in Union County but primarily serves students at El Dorado High School.
Angie Parker, a Pre-AP/ AP Biology teacher at EHS, is the lead teacher for the Global Classroom. Through the program, students get to experience various cultures and attractions around the world. Parker said that though she plays the lead role in the trips, they wouldn’t be possible without the help of other EHS faculty.
“I do the research and planning involved. I help students enroll by having interest meetings and hold meetings to prepare for our travels. The number of travelers determines the number of chaperones so that our trips are safe and organized. Sheri Rankin is an experienced chaperone that will be going to Costa Rica and Europe. Callie Kittle and Pate Bauldree are helping chaperone the Costa Rica trip as well. Hinton Foster is a chaperone for the European trip and Jamie Lowe plans to help chaperone the Hawaiian trip,” she explained.
Parker explained how easy it is to enroll to become a traveler. “Travelers sign up online with their parent where they fill out forms and make payments. A permission slip isn’t necessary since the parent is signing them up in the first place and fills out forms such as behavior agreements and medical forms. Travel is open to any student in Union County age 13-19. All students have to do to join is enroll on any trip.”
There are currently still spots available for the summer of 2019. “The cost to reserve your seat is only $95.
The cost to travel depends on the destination. Most students/ families opt to make monthly payments. To do this, students place a down payment of $95 (or more if they want their monthly payments lower) and pay off the amount until the month before we depart.”
This year they offered scholarships. This was announced in the Wildcat Weekly and the morning announcements. Only five students applied for the scholarship. Parker hopes to offer a scholarship next year to travel and hope that students take the application process seriously in hopes of being chosen to travel. “This year’s winners were Dallas Williams and Jaraelyn Johnson. They will be joining us in Costa Rica, all expenses paid. We even were able to pay for their passports, gratuities, and gave each one over $200 in spending money,” said Parker.
Students benefit by traveling in many ways. Students get to learn in all subjects through experiencing it. They get to see what they learn in textbooks up close and personal. “The students that we travel with end up becoming friends and it’s neat to watch new friendships form within the group. We usually take trips where we are surrounded by people groups much different from our own, which makes students more aware of other cultures, beliefs, and offers a better understanding of people unlike ourselves. We all learn life lessons and become more globally minded.”
She explained how this trip is not only benefiting students in school learning, but also helping in their normal life. Students also have the opportunity to earn high school or college credit by creating a presentation focused on research during the trip.
This summer they will be going to Costa Rica for 10 days. They will travel to Hawaii in June of 2019 for eight days and then to Europe (Rome, Paris, and London) in July of 2019 for 11 days. Last summer, they traveled to Ecuador and The Galapagos Islands for nine days.
This is not a “class” where there is a lecture or one that you would put on your fouryear-plan. Life is seen as a classroom because you are constantly learning through the experiences, experiences that can never be taught here in El Dorado.
Parker gave a brief description on how the group travels.
“We meet at EHS and take a bus to the airport in Little Rock. When we return, a bus brings us back to EHS. When we travel, almost everything is included -- flights, hotels, guides, attractions. Every trip is unique and offers something different.”
Some students travel more than once. It depends on what each student is wanting to experience. Traveling is an investment in yourself, she said. “We owe it to ourselves to get outside of our comfort zones and become more cultured and understanding of our world,” Parker said.
For more information feel free to contact Mrs. Parker on Facebook on the page “Global Classroom of Union County,” or find her in Room 2523. Students can also contact her through her email, aparker@ esd-15.org.
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