7th Chicago International Education Conference
Problem-Solving: Classroom, Community, and the World
Through presentations and discussions, the International Education Conference links curriculua that address global issues—world conflicts, human rights, climate change—and problem-solving strategies applicable to everyday dilemmas that students confront.
The IEC is intended for K-12 teachers and administrators, but open to all interested individuals. Attendees earned up to 6 clock hours/CPDUs applicable to ISBE licensure requirements. All IEC programs are free and open to the public.
Robinson has over 25 years of experience in human rights education, community and youth development, and community organizing. In her role as Human Rights Education and Training Manager for the RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights Education Project, RFK Speak Truth to Power, Robinson serves as Chief Adviser for all Human Rights Education related activity.
Robinson started her career in the field of community engagement and youth development at The American University where she helped start what was then the Center for Volunteerism and Community Service. She then moved to Amnesty International, USA where she served as the Mid-Atlantic Regional Deputy Director and then the Director of the Human Rights Education program. Robinson has conducted numerous trainings and professional development sessions at educational conferences, within school districts and at educational meetings, in the U.S. and internationally.
During his 25+ year career as an architect, Trung Le has consistently produced award-winning projects that underscore his passion for changing the world through design. His projects have also been published in periodicals including Architectural Record, World Architecture News and Edutopia, and in 2007 he collaborated with Bruce Mau to produce The Third Teacher. Le has blogged for Fast Company and is a frequent speaker at national and international venues.
In 2010, Le launched The Third Teacher +, a multidisciplinary design think tank that treats the future of teaching and learning as a living question. Earlier this year, Le co-founded WONDER, by Design – an education design agency that lives at the intersection of learning, design and innovation.
Schedule & Resources
8:00-8:30 AM Registration, Information Tables and Light Breakfast
8:30-9:00 AM Welcome
Andy Graan (Assistant Director for Programs, Center for International Studies)
Troy Peters (Director of Programs, Center for International Studies)
Izabela Grobelna (Community Engagement Coordinator, Chicago Cultural Alliance)
9:00-10:00 AM Keynote Address—“A New Prescription: Enhancing the Lens Through Which We See the World”
Karen Robinson (Senior Education Manager, RFK Center for Justice and Human Rights Education Project & Speak Truth to Power)
10:00-10:15 AM Break
Trung Le (Co-Founder, WONDER, by DESIGN)
11:15-12:15 PM Lunch (provided with registration)
12:15-1:15 PM Breakout Session 1
1:25-2:35 PM Breakout Session 2
2:35-2:45 PM Evaluations and Program Conclusion
Attendees had the opportunity to choose from the following breakout sessions:
1) Teaching Problem Solving through Archaeology
Presented by Carol Ng-He, Continuing Education Program Developer, The Oriental Institute of the University of Chicago
In this session, teachers learn how archaeologists analyze salvage sites in present-day Sudan. Teachers participate in a lesson using archaeological principles and methods that deeply engage problem-solving skills. Based on a lesson idea from the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA), teachers learn how to use discarded materials as a creative teaching strategy to help students develop observational, inferential, and interpretational skills. The goal of the session is to demonstrate how archaeologists reconstruct the way people lived in the past, and help to answer questions about our culture and society. In this session, teachers learn how archaeologists analyze salvage sites in present-day Sudan. Teachers participate in a lesson using archaeological principles and methods that deeply engage problem-solving skills. Based on a lesson idea from the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA), teachers learn how to use discarded materials as a creative teaching strategy to help students develop observational, inferential, and interpretational skills. The goal of the session is to demonstrate how archaeologists reconstruct the way people lived in the past, and help to answer questions about our culture and society.
Presented by Santiago Meija, Ph.D. Candidate & Pedagogy Program Student Coordinator, Department of Philosophy, University of Chicago
In the 90s, the UN declared that the decade from 1995 to 2004 was the “UN Decade of Human Rights Education”. Ever since, there has been an explosion of programs and resources across the globe to teach, or facilitate the teaching of, human rights. With this proliferation of resources has also come a proliferation of perspectives on how human rights should be taught and of the goals that human rights education is meant to achieve. In this session teachers will be introduced to a number of resources to teach human rights which provide a window to some of these perspectives and goals. We will see strategies that are best suited to raise awareness and basic knowledge about human rights, to transform the students’ own moral sensibilities, and to empower them to use the language of human rights in advocacy. Teachers will examine the strengths and limitations of each of these approaches. We will also discuss some particular aspects of human rights that, perhaps for good reason, are often missing in nearly all of these programs, such as the structural differences and potential hierarchies between different kinds of human rights, the contradictions in America’s stance towards human rights, and the political nature of human rights discourse. The session will equip teachers with a number of resources that can facilitate their teaching of topics related with human rights and will help them to make more informed choices about how they would like to approach these topics with their students.
Presented by Maureen Marshall, Outreach and Campus Programs Coordinator, Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies, University of Chicago
Novels and television shows such as “CSI” and “Bones” have helped to usher in a “forensic anthropology craze” in American popular culture and the scientist-detective has become a familiar hero who uses “scientific techniques” (or technology) to solve crimes in the interest of justice. Yet, since the human rights advocacy of Asociación Civil Abuelas de Plaza de Mayo (Grandmothers of the Plaza de Mayo) led to collaboration between American forensic anthropologists and Argentinians, the discipline has developed along new paths and effectively transformed the practice of forensic anthropology. The role of forensic anthropology in human rights investigations has become collaborative and international in scope, yet in each post-war context forensic anthropology is called on to address very distinct local problems. This session will present background on the development of forensic anthropology in human rights investigations and examine case-studies of how forensic anthropology has been used to create very different local solutions to reconciliation and justice. The session will provide educators with resources and ideas for teaching forensic anthropology in science, art, and social science classrooms, as well as information on career paths in forensic anthropology.
4) A Problem Well Put is Half Solved: Middle East Crises in the High School Classroom
Presented by Alexander Barna, Outreach Coordinator, Center for Middle Eastern Studies, University of Chicago
If we have any hope of understanding the complex problems of the contemporary Middle East and perhaps one day solving them, we need to be able to ask the right questions. In this breakout session we will explore the important skill of question asking and question framing as a crucial step in the any problem solving method. This session will also feature special guest Tyler Blackwell, the Director of the Center for Arabic Language and Culture. From 2011-2013 Mr. Blackwell worked at the US Department of State in the office of the Special Envoy for Middle East Peace, and he will provide us with real-world examples of how problem solving strategies are applied in the context of diplomatic negotiations.
5) Healthy Habits and Community Tour: The Bronzeville Children’s Museum & the Pullman Historical Site
A program offered by the Chicago Cultural Alliance
Chicago Cultural Alliance’s cross-cultural tours visit ethnic museums and cultural centers across the city providing experiential learning on a wide range of subjects including immigration, environment, and family. In this tour, we will visit the Bronzeville Children’s Museum where students can learn through play about healthy habits and science. Then we will travel to the Pullman State Historic Site for a view of a 20th century industrial community. The tour offers an opportunity to imagine the importance of healthy habits for young people and their community. Please note that the bus tour includes a to-go lunch. The bus departs from the UChicago campus at 11:30am and returns at 3pm.
Due to space limitations, advanced registration is required to take the bus tour.
The 2014 Chicago International Education Conference was presented by the Center for International Studies and co-sponsored by the Center for Latin American Studies, the Center for East European and Russian/Eurasian Studies, the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, the South Asia Language and Area Center, the Center for East Asian Studies, the Program on the Global Environment, the Neighborhood Schools Program, the Office for Civic Engagement, the Chicago Cultural Alliance, the Oriental Institute, and the International House Global Voices Program.