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Global Kids at Machinima Expo 2012 


This past weekend saw the 5th annual Machinima Expo which celebrates the best in machinima online. The event screened a plethora of films and fascinating panels to explore all aspects of the film community. Global Kids was invited to serve as a panelist during a session titled The Machinima Is The Message: Politically Direct. During the session we focused on our work with youth this past summer to create our climate change film The Future We Want and discussed how machinima is an asset to our students.


The panel was held in Second Life and broadcasted via Livestream to dozens of attendees. Watch the full panel below. 



Race to the White House - Election Day final event 

On election day, November 6, Global Kids leaders who participated in the "Race to the White House" this past summer, presented the results of their program at the Brooklyn Public Library. Race to the White House was a program that used GPS technology and Geocaching to create a game to engage the public in a conversation about the presidential election and to discuss issues that were important to participating youth and their community.


The youth placed GPS-linked "travel bugs" (metal tags) with questions related to public policy issues in public locations and posted the coordinates online for other geocachers to find. The students selected policy issues ranging from internet censorship to college tuition costs. Players in New York can vote on the importance of each issue by choosing to physically move the bug closer to, or farther from, the White House, and writing about why they made that choice on the geocaching website. The students monitored the responses to their challenge and the location of the bugs and presented the results to other youth including other GK leaders from John Adams School. 


See the video below, where the GK leaders talk about their participation in Race to the White House and what they learned




GK Highlighted at the National Summer Learning Association Conference 

Global Kids' digital summer program is highlighted in Pittsburgh's Kidsburgh, an online news source related to children and educational issues. In their article, "Big ideas for fixing the 'summer slide' hit Pittsburgh's national conference", high quality summer programs that were part of the National Summer Learning Association (NSLA) Conference in October are mentioned.


Global Kids, a recipient of the National Summer Learning Award, received funds from the NSLA to partner with teacher fellows for their Summer Pathways for Innovation project. Two different teachers collaborated with GK's Online Leadership Program staff to develop programs using new media tools such as virtual worlds to explore environmental justice and geocaching to learn about electoral politics. The teachers were able to help connect the curricula to Common Core Standards and you can see how they did that here.


Russell from Scotland in the background of our group photo


Thoughts From An Intern 

After being held captive in my home by hurricane Sandy, I had time to reflect on the first part of my internship here at Global Kids. It's already been a week (or two the time just goes by) and I've already done so much. I've created a presentaion on geocaching, set up a linux based network monitor and helped set up the office laptops. I've also done some clerical work as is expected as part of an interns tasks. Overall this has been one of the best internships I've had. It's a laid back office, they all seem pretty nice and they're not all old people so there is this level of "coolness" that comes from the staff. I definitly enjoy working with Usman and his one man IT operation, the creativity he puts into making the office network infrastructure work on a modest budget is amazing. Working with OLP is great because I have an opportunity to work with people my age and assist them in any projects they may be doing. I also get to meet other proffesionals in the field of game based learning and education which has broadened my network.


GK at the Global Education Conference 

Global Kids will be presenting at the 2012 Global Education Conference, which takes place online from November 12-17. One of the best things about this conference is that it’s entirely virtual and free, which makes it incredibly accessible and allows for a globally connected experience.


"The conference seeks to present ideas, examples, and projects that help connect educators and classrooms, with a strong emphasis on promoting global awareness, fostering global competency, and inspiring action towards solving real–world problems. It is our hope that attendees will challenge themselves and others to become more active citizens of the world. Let us learn, question, create, and engage in meaningful, authentic opportunities within a global context!” -From GEC Website


This year, GEC, recognizing that games-based learning is a hot educational topic, has partnered with BrainPOP, a creator of animated educational videos, to develop a new gaming strand for the conference to highlight games within a global education context.


Global Kids’ session will take place on Thursday, November 12, 3pm-4pm EST on the following topic:


Developing Global Citizenship Skills Through Game Design