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GSE Pulse
The premier Global Sustainability Education blog

Education that integrates inquiry-based learning and real-world issues increase student engagement, a catalyst for academic achievement and drop-out prevention. Beyond that? It's just plain fun--to teach, to learn, and to design solutions for a sustainable future.

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Integrating STEM & Sustainability | October eNews

by host on Thursday, October 10, 2013 7:43 PM
Integrating STEM & Sustainability Integrate STEM and sustainability into your curriculumSTEM and Sustainability Guide Pilot To prepare students to thrive in the ever-changing fields of science, engineering and technology, developing innovative and skilled thinkers in the early grades has never been more crucial. That's why Facing the Future is developing an interdisciplinary middle school STEM and Sustainability guide.

Interested? Email Sheeba by Wednesday, October 16, to pilot this guide in your class!

It provides you:

Research on best practices related to teaching STEM Effective lessons for multiple learning styles & correlations to standards...
STEM
National Energy Month
Fueling Our Future
Google Science Fair
Story of Solutions
World Food Day

Is the rich/poor gap getting worse?

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, October 06, 2013 11:46 PM

ISB_Fisherman“We don’t segregate M&Ms, why do we segregate people?”
a student from Seattle asks.  

“What skills did your parents pass down to you?” one Thai student ponders.  

Who are these compelling interrogators?


International School Bangkok
middle school students
Seattle Girls School

It's GSE Week!

by host on Wednesday, September 25, 2013 6:25 AM
It's Global Sustainability Education Week! Learn more about Governor Inslee's proclamationHello Colleagues and Friends!

Facing the Future asked Washington State Governor Jay Inslee to make this week Global Sustainability Education Week in support of educators who inspire and prepare students to create more equitable, prosperous and sustainable world. He did! Thank you, Governor! Now we've heard that Governor Quinn of Illinois also did... so, who's next?

This week ask your students to...

Global Sustainability Education Week on the Horizon | August eNews

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, August 07, 2013 3:00 PM
The first annual Global Sustainability Education Week will be September 22-28, 2013! At Facing the Future's request Washington State Governor Jay Inslee made this proclamation and we encourage you to request your state's governor join this movement! We appreciate Governor Inslee's acknowledgement of global sustainability as a hallmark for education in the 21st Century and that educators play a central role in becoming more equitable, prosperous and sustainable.
Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Global Issues
Exploring Global Issues
Professional Development
eNews

Get Out and Enjoy It: Building Global Perspective and Critical Skills

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, July 23, 2013 7:00 PM
It’s summer, and a lot of teachers and students have some more free time on their hands than usual. The standard school year is usually a very busy time for everyone. If you’re a teacher there’s grading, planning, after-school events, and somehow you’re supposed to also life your life outside of work-related activities. 

Because the school year is such a busy time, field trips and other activities that build a global perspective and 21st Century Skills are difficult to pull off. That’s where Facing the Future’s materials come in. But how do you take it a step further if there's no time or funding for engaging field trips? In this blog we explore how to bring the world to your students.

Latest News
Teacher's Guide
Exploring Global Issues
Free Curriculum
Engaging Students Through Global Issues
Connecting Students to the World
global issues and sustainable solutions

Living Wage and Happiness

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, July 17, 2013 12:00 AM
This recently-gone-viral article features a screenshot of how McDonald’s, in partnership with Visa, recommends employees budget their money each month. The budget seems sensible enough on the first glance. Monthly income is listed at just over $2,000, while total expenses are just about $1,200. But then you notice a couple of fishy details.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Debate
Free Curriculum
Sustainability
Buy Use Toss

July 2013 eNewsletter: Summer Savings

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, June 30, 2013 3:00 PM
Summer is upon us and it’s an exciting time around Facing the Future. On June 6th we celebrated Facing the Future Day and the official launch of our newest student text and teacher’s guide, Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections. Then, July 1st marked the release of Exploring Global Issues in digital formats, and there’s more excitement to come!

Today marks the beginning of our Summer Savings promotion. We’ve lowered our prices across the board to help more teachers engage and inspire students with Facing the Future’s global sustainability education resources. Plus, we’re offering a coupon code for an additional 15% off purchases made in the month of July! Just use the coupon code Summer2013, but hurry! This offer ends July 31st!

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Video
Exploring Global Issues
Service Learning
Free Curriculum
Climate Change
Real World Math
Buy Use Toss
eNews
Making Connections

DOMA and the Importance of Teaching Governance

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, June 25, 2013 11:58 AM
This morning four letters leapt across headlines: DOMA.

The Defense of Marriage Act, which in 1996 defined marriage as being between one man and one woman under federal law, was struck down. At least, that’s the gist.

What actually happened is much more complex and, regardless of where you stand on this issue, serves as a key example of why Global Sustainability Education is so important. Encouraging students to learn about global issues and linking the theoretical to the concrete increases understanding and engagement, and paves the way for young people to become responsible, globally-aware citizens. In the case of today’s DOMA conversations, learning about civics and governance can help provide a framework that makes current events easier to wade through. Today I’ll go through a few examples that you can use.

Latest News
Exploring Global Issues
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Project-based Learning
It's All Connected

Climate Change, Consensus, and Free Curriculum

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Monday, June 24, 2013 4:00 AM
Last Tuesday Seattle’s NPR affiliate, KPLU ran this story on Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn visiting Washington DC to testify in discussions about coal terminals in the Pacific Northwest. Here’s a quick summary of what happened:

McGinn states use of coal should be ceased for various reasons, among them negative environmental impacts. A response to McGinn’s testimony came from West Virginia Congressman David McKinley, who explained that linking climate change to fossil fuels is dubious at best, and should not be used as grounds to oppose mining and use of coal.


Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Video
Global Issues
Exploring Global Issues
Free Curriculum
Free Curriculum
Climate Change

5 Days, 5 Stories: Making Connections

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, June 20, 2013 10:00 PM
This week Facing the Future is launching its “5 Days, 5 Stories” series wherein we share the stories of five of our most popular resources. We’ll cover how each bit of curriculum came to be, why it’s important, and how you can use it in the classroom to engage your students in learning and inspire them to take positive action to make the world a better place. Today’s featured resource, and the finale of the series, is our ELL and striving reading/writer student text and teacher’s guide Making Connections: Engaging Students in Language, Literacy, and Global Issues.

When Facing the Future’s Curriculum Development Director, Sheeba Jacob, started working at Facing the Future, Making Connections was just getting off the ground. The folks at Facing the Future wanted to make a resource that would fill a clear need for teachers and students, and after creating Real World Math, which we featured on this blog yesterday, their attention turned to language arts.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Making Connections

5 Days, 5 Stories: Real World Math

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, June 20, 2013 6:00 AM
This week I'm writing a series called “5 Days, 5 Stories” wherein I share the stories of five of our most popular resources. We’ll cover how each bit of curriculum came to be, why it’s important, and how you can use it in the classroom to engage your students in learning and inspire them to take positive action to make the world a better place. Today’s featured resource is Real World Math: Engaging Students through Global Issues.

Often times in the textbook industry projects begin simply because someone has a good idea for a book. Other times a publisher surveys the kinds of resources that exist in a given field and realize most are out of date, and then proceed to replicate past success in a new wrapper. Still other times publishers look at the body of work that already exists in a given subject area and takes the best parts of each in order to create what they hope will be a super-resource. Curriculum and teacher resources that are born of these types of circumstances serve a purpose, but Real World Math, like many Facing the Future resources, is different because it is a direct response to a need we observed in schools and with the teachers we work with each day.


Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Real World Math

5 Days, 5 Stories: Engaging Students Through Global Issues

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, June 19, 2013 2:00 AM
This week Facing the Future is launching its “5 Days, 5 Stories” series wherein we share the stories of five of our most popular resources. We’ll cover how each bit of curriculum came to be, why it’s important, and how you can use it in the classroom to engage your students in learning and inspire them to take positive action to make the world a better place.

Today’s featured resource is the teacher lesson plan book Engaging Students Through Global Issues: Activity-Based Lessons and Action Projects. Theis resource weighs in at 264 pages and features in-depth lesson plans that include handouts, assignments, instructions, and extensions that provide an interdisciplinary approach to teaching. Engaging Students Through Global Issues is one of the most powerful resources in the Facing the Future catalog.

Click here to continue reading.
Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Engaging Students Through Global Issues

5 Days, 5 Stories: It's All Connected

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, June 18, 2013 7:00 AM
This week Facing the Future is launching its “5 Days, 5 Stories” series wherein we share the stories of five of our most popular resources. We’ll cover how each bit of curriculum came to be, why it’s important, and how you can use it in the classroom to engage your students in learning and inspire them to take positive action to make the world a better place. Today I’ll cover the story of Facing the Future’s most popular curriculum resource, It’s All Connected: A Comprehensive Guide to Global Issues and Sustainable Solutions. This nimble high school resource has sold tens of thousands of copies, and is popular with students and teachers alike.

The best anecdote for how loved this resource is came from a 12th grade teacher from just outside Seattle that I spoke to last week. After raving about It’s All Connected for it’s valuable readings and lessons, she turned to me and said “You know, I have to buy a new class set almost every year. I buy copies for my classroom and loan them out to the students, but by the end of the year they’re gone! My students take It’s All Connected home and refuse to bring them back!”

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
It's All Connected

5 Days, 5 Stories: Free Curriculum Units

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Monday, June 17, 2013 7:00 AM
This week Facing the Future is launching its “5 Days, 5 Stories” series wherein we share the stories of five of our most popular resources. We’ll cover how each bit of curriculum came to be, why it’s important, and how you can use it in the classroom to engage your students in learning and inspire them to take positive action to make the world a better place.

Today’s story actually focuses on two pieces of Facing the Future curriculum: Buy, Use, Toss? and Climate Change. These two pieces embody much of what we believe in here at Facing the Future. These beliefs include education that encourages students to be critically thinking, globally aware participants in the world they live in, and a desire to provide activities and assignments that grab students attention while helping them to learn by doing. Last, at Facing the Future we believe this kind of curriculum should be accessible to as many teachers and students as is possible. While we can’t sustainable offer all of our curriculum for free, we strive to offer each product for the lowest possible price. Climate Change and Buy, Use, Toss? however, which are among our most popular resources, are free for anyone to download on our website!

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Free Curriculum
Climate Change
Buy Use Toss

Combine Resources and Feel the Power: Part II

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, June 13, 2013 3:00 AM
In yesterday's blog I talked about ways you can use It's All Connected and Engaging Students though Global Issues to design an innovative social studies or science class where students learned about real global issues and took part in activities and assignments that are active and build 21st Centur Skills like problem solving, collaboration, and communication.

Today's blog is going to take on a more interdisciplinary approach and focus on how you can interweave global sustainability education in to math and language arts classes in the 6 - 12 grade range. By using both Real World Math and Making Connections, you can impress upon students that global issues and sustainability impact all areas of study and corners of life, while also helping them to develop skills of reading, writing, geometry, and algebra.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Real World Math
Making Connections

Combine Resources and Feel the Power: Part I

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, June 12, 2013 4:58 AM
Exploring Global Issues is now officially launched following our launch party and Facing the Future Day celebration last week. Over the past few months this blog has focused heavily on the new, innovative resource that is Exploring Global Issues. but there's much more that Facing the Future curriculum has to offer beyond this one student text and teacher's guide. That's why today and tomorrow's blogs is going to focus on ways to bundle Facing the Future resources that can be very effective in developing 21st Century Skills and building global awareness in students.

The first combination I'd like to highlight is designed for high school teachers and students: It's All Connected and Engaging Students through Global Issues.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Engaging Students Through Global Issues
It's All Connected

Launch Party and Facing the Future Day Wrap-Up

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, June 09, 2013 10:57 PM
On Thursday June 6th 75 teachers and global sustainability education advocates celebrated the launch of our newest student text and teacher’s guide, Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections. June 8th was also Facing the Future Day, which we took opportunity to celebrate, while thanking teachers for their hard work and commitment to global sustainability education this year.

It was a beautiful, sunny day and downtown Seattle was visible on the horizon from the McKinstry Innovation Center, a space where world-changing organizations like Teach for America, E3 Washington, Washington STEM, and seventeen other innovative groups have set up shop. Our goal in designing Exploring Global Issues , and all of our curriculum and professional development, is to teach students essential 21st Century Skills like critical thinking and collaboration, to help them become more globally aware by learning about critical global issues, and to inspire them to take positive action to make the world a better place. Given these goals, the McKinstry Innovation Center was the perfect space for such a celebration!

Click here to continue reading
.
Latest News
Exploring Global Issues

Zeichner Named World Educator Award Winner

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, June 05, 2013 8:43 AM
This year The World Affairs Council selected a friend of Facing the Future to be its 2013-2014 World Educator Award winner. WAC announced yesterday that Noah Zeichner, who teaches at Chief Sealth International High School in Seattle, would be honored this year. First and foremost, we’d like to extend hearty congratulations to Noah!

Facing the Future has a longstanding relationship with Noah Zeichner. In fact, he was one of the pilot testers for our newest student text and teacher’s guide, Exploring Global Issues: Social Economic, and Environmental Interconnections. Aside from being a valuable and generous contributor to Facing the Future, Zeichner has long been involved in programs both at Chief Sealth, and with outside groups and organizations.
*Photo from World Affairs Council

Latest News
Video

June 2013 eNewsletter

by host on Friday, May 31, 2013 6:00 AM

From the Mayor: June 6th is Facing the Future Day

 Seattle mayor Mike McGinn has declared June 6th to be Facing the Future Day! Mayor McGinn calls upon us all "to reflect upon the importance of educating our future generations in the skills of critical thinking and sustainable behavior." At Facing the Future, we believe in the importance of global sustainability education, and we know that you place value on critical thinking, global awareness, and sustainable behavior daily. That's why we work so hard to provide you with free and low-cost curriculum and professional development resources; because teachers and advocates put in the work to teach young people that being a responsible global citizen is critical.

Click here to continue reading

Linking to Current Events: Water Scarcity and Pollution

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, May 29, 2013 1:58 AM
Water is a massive global issue. It’s features in Facing the Future’s newest student text and teacher’s guide, Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections, and for good reason. Huge segments of the world’s population don’t have access to clean drinking water, aquifers around the world are depleted or close to being run dry, and projections suggest that in coming decades clean water will be the most scare and sought after resource on the planet.

In light of all this concern over water scarcity, news announced this week that Wal-Mart plead guilty to years’ worth of violations of the Clean Water Act is big news.

Latest News
Exploring Global Issues
Global Sustainability Education
Global Issues

From the Mayor: June 6th is Facing the Future Day

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, May 21, 2013 7:27 PM
Seattle mayor Mike McGinn has declared June 6th to be Facing the Future Day! In the proclamation, Mayor McGinn calls upon us all “to reflect upon the importance of educating our future generations in the skills of critical thinking and sustainable behavior.”

Facing the Future is much more than a nonprofit organization, an educational publisher, or a resource for teachers and students. We believe in the power of education, and that teachers can make an incredible impact on our future by teaching students the essential skills they need to be responsible global citizens. That’s why our curriculum and professional development focuses on helping students learn 21st century skills like critical thinking, problem solving, collaboration, and communication. With these skills young people can grow up to make informed decision in important situations. By equipping the next generation with 21st century skills and knowledge of important global issues, we make an investment in the future of our planet.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education

STEM Excitement: An Underwater ROV Competition

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, May 16, 2013 10:23 PM
June 20 – 22nd the MATE Center’s 12th annual International ROV (remote operated vehicle) Competition will take place in Federal Way, Washington. K- 12 and college students from around the world will participate. 

The competition’s website describes the event this way as one that challenges students to “design and build ROVs to tackle missions modeled after scenarios from the ocean workplace.  The competition’s class structure of beginner, intermediate, and advanced complements the education pipeline by providing students with the opportunity to build upon their skills – and the application of those skills – as they engineer increasingly more complex ROVs for increasingly more complex mission tasks.” The program is designed to provide an application for STEM skills and help students get excited about learning science, technology, engineering, and math.

Latest News
Project-based Learning

Engaging Students in Wildlife Conservation: A Free Curriculum Unit

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, May 09, 2013 3:00 PM
In 2011 it was officially announced that the Western Black Rhinoceros went extinct.

There are obviously highly complex factors affecting how and why any species goes extinct but it is safe to say that in the case of the Black rhino, this could have been prevented. In today’s blog I’ll use the black rhino and snow leopards as a context for talking to young people about endangered species, why they should care, and why this global issue is so complex.

Click here to continue reading.
Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Free Curriculum

Appreciating Teachers: Let's Say 'Thank You'

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Monday, May 06, 2013 6:26 PM
Let’s talk about Ms. Jones.

At a time in my life where English classes were neither challenging nor inspiring, Ms. Jones introduced me to meaningful writing and reading. I’d never had a class where students were assigned novels and short stories for homework, and I’d never taken a course where classtime often consisted of sitting around and chatting about the reading and how it related to my life and the world. At first I thought it was great because as a class we often felt as if we were just hanging out with a cool teacher who really knew things about the world. Really she was laying a foundation for each of us to be responsible global citizens.

Click here to continue reading.
Latest News
Global Sustainability Education

Free Lessons to Help You Discuss Workers' Rights

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, May 05, 2013 7:46 PM
In the wake of a the April 24th garment factory collapse in Dhaka, Bangladesh a wave of commentary and criticism of working conditions around the world have become mainstream in the United States. Corporations and news pundits alike are discussing working conditions for garment workers, particularly those in Third World countries.

Without a doubt, the sheer weight of the death toll in this case has brought conversations of workers’ rights to bear. NPR has provided exceptional perspective on the issue, and reminded listeners that workers’ rights, particularly in the garment industry, is not a new global issue, and that it is something Americans in particular should be aware of and be prepared to take action to solve.

Click here to continue reading.
Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Global Issues
Free Curriculum
Global sustainability
Sustainability
Buy Use Toss

Debate: Energy Use and Energy Sources

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, May 01, 2013 8:46 PM
In May 2011 the Renewable Energy Initiative supported National Clean Energy month. The purpose of this month was to draw attention to the wide variety of alternative and renewable energy sources on the market. It also served as an opportunity to hold up examples of innovative products and businesses that depend entirely or primarily on clean energy.

It is now 2013, but energy is still a significant global issues. That’s why today’s blog is going to focus on this topic, and why Facing the Future, as an organization, is focusing on energy in particular in the curriculum units we’re currently developing. Today’s post will show you some valuable resources to help you start talking and thinking about energy, and show you some next steps for learning and teaching on energy more deeply.

Latest News
Exploring Global Issues
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Debate

A Free Lesson to Wrap Up Mathematics Awareness Month

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, April 25, 2013 6:40 PM
A couple of weeks ago I mentioned that April 2013 is Mathematics Awareness Month with this year’s theme being sustainability. I walked through our primary math resource, Real World Math: Engaging Students through Global Issues, which is designed to teach foundational algebra and geometry to middle and high school students while also developing global awareness.

As Mathematics Awareness Month comes to a close, though, I’d like to point to some other math lessons that are sprinkled throughout Facing the Future’s teacher resources. These lessons range from kindergarten through high school grades, and many are designed to be modified by teachers to fit the ability level of a given student group. I’ll highlight one such lesson in this blog post, “How Big is a Billion?”

Latest News
Teacher's Guide
Engaging Students Through Global Issues
Real World Math
Math

Driving Innovation: Lessons from a Pre-Service Teacher

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, April 23, 2013 12:00 AM
In November 2012 I struck up a conversation with a teacher while working Facing the Future’s booth at the National Council for the Social Studies Conference in Seattle. It turns out that this teacher was an education faculty member at a university in North Carolina who does a great deal of work with pre-service teachers. Talking to young teachers about their craft is a passion of mine, so I was thrilled when this professor contacted me soon after the conference to see if I would be interested in doing a Q&A with one of her classes.

One session turned in to four over the course of two terms, and I learned a great deal about what concerns new teachers, and how an organization like Facing the Future can help make the road to teaching a little easier to travel.

One student, Stephanie, was inspired by Facing the Future’s teacher resource Connecting Students to the World, and came up with her own lesson unit for K-2 called “Protect the Endangered: A Biodiversity Unit.” 

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Free Curriculum
Elementary
Connecting Students to the World

Celebrating Earth Day: A Photo Essay

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Saturday, April 20, 2013 2:33 PM
Last month FTF’s exceptional Education Technology Manager, Alicia Keefe, shared what Earth Day means to her. In that newsletter story she explained that Earth Day is an opportunity “to raise awareness of global sustainability and to remind each of us how important it is to be a steward of our planet.”

We believe sustainability means balancing social, economic, and environmental concerns in such a way that all occupants of our planet can live health, happy, and productive lives. It’s easy to forget how much of an impact our individual actions can have on our planet, so I’d like to share a free lesson from our website called “Mapping the Impact,” from Buy, Use, Toss?, which can help you understand the concept of an ecological footprint, and how we all have a responsibility to the health of our environment.

Beyond sharing this lesson, though, I’d like to celebrate Earth Day by sharing some photos taken by Facing the Future staff. We come to work each day because we care about our planet, and the images below represent some of our favorite places. How can you do your part to help preserve natural spaces like these? What are some of your favorite places? Please share with us!

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Earth Day
Buy Use Toss

GiveBIG is May 15th!

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, April 18, 2013 6:35 PM
Every year The Seattle Foundation sponsors GiveBIG, a one-day online charitable giving event to inspire people to give generously to nonprofit organizations in the Pacific Northwest. Though it’s based in Seattle, this is a national event anyone can participate in. But why should you participate? And more specifically, why should you support Facing the Future?

Three Words: Triple Your Impact.
When you donate to Facing the Future through the GiveBIG website on May 15th only, The Seattle Foundation and the FTF board of directors will match every gift dollar for dollar. That means a gift of $50 is in fact worth $150, a gift of $100 is worth $300, and so on. 

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Video
Global sustainability
GiveBIG

Teaching in the Wake of Tragedy

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, April 16, 2013 9:08 AM
Unfortunately Peace and Conflict is a global issue. We cover the topic in our books and on our website, but the timbre of conflict changes in the heat of an event like yesterday’s Boston Marathon, December's Sandy Hook Elementary attack, and the theater shooting in Aurora in July. Maybe it’s because the Marathon belongs to the people. Maybe it's because the Boston Marathon is funky. There was a time when the race’s winner was awarded a bowl of stew. Cheering crowds line New England neighborhoods to watch the event and encourage participants. A friend once told me he high-fived close to 1,000 children over the 26.2 mile course. People complain about the inconvenience it causes, but love the event all the same. Something similar can be said about the shootings at Sandy Hook and Auroa. One is a school where children learn and play, the other is a place where people gather to socialize and be whisked away in to a story. We don't expect to be in danger when celebrating stories, life, learning, and human achievement. 

Latest News
Global Issues

Transforming Students: A Teacher Profile

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, April 11, 2013 10:20 AM
I'm stepping aside for this blog post and letting Facing the Future's development director, Justine Miley, take over the keyboard to tell us about a recent visit to her mother's 5th grade special education writing classroom. The story is truly inspiring, so take a look!

Until next time,
Daniel


With Mother’s Day coming up in just a few weeks we’d like to take this opportunity to celebrate women who lead, inspire, and teach every day. In this month’s newsletter we’ll be focusing on my mother, Joan, who continues to amaze me with her passion, patience, and dedication to teaching.  I recently had the honor of visiting her classroom to see her in action. I am so proud to be her daughter and I am honored to share a bit about her with you.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Elementary
special education
writing

Mathematics Awareness Month: Sustainability

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, April 10, 2013 7:39 AM
“The American Mathematical Society, the American Statistical Association, the Mathematical Association of America, and the Society for Industrial and Applied Mathematics announce that the theme for Mathematics Awareness Month, April 2013, is the Mathematics of Sustainability.”

The above announcement is from the Joint Policy Board for Mathematics, who are responsible for Mathematics Awareness Month, which is the month of April. As an education nonprofit that focuses on global sustainability education, we understand the importance of M.A.M. 2013’s theme. One of the cornerstones of Facing the Future curriculum is the development of 21st Century Skills like systems thinking, critical thinking, and problem solving in conjunction with a STEM focus so that students are not only encouraged to develop technical skills, but to understand how those skills can be applied to positive solutions in the world around  them.


Latest News
Teacher's Guide
Global Issues
Professional Development
Sustainability
Real World Math

Your Guide to Service Learning and Project-Based Learning

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, April 09, 2013 7:03 PM
You may have noticed the “Take Action!” tab at the top of this and other Facing the Future pages. One of the cornerstones of global sustainability education is applying what a student learns in the classroom in the broader world. In our lessons we try to incorporate projects that encourage students to take positive actions whenever possible. We believe a combination including service learning and project-based learning are most effective because these types of assignments ask students to face and adapt to real challenges. Additionally, while it’s important to create a knowledge base on certain subjects, we at Facing the Future believe taking that knowledge and putting in to action is the best way to make learning stick. Plus, projects like these are productive and often tangible, and work like this is typically more gratifying for students as well.

Today I’ll highlight two examples of active learning and show you where you can get started in either service learning or project-based learning. 

Latest News
Exploring Global Issues
Service Learning
Project-based Learning
Sustainability

April eNews: Lead, Teach, and Inspire

by host on Monday, April 08, 2013 6:56 PM
April eNews: Lead, Teach, and Inspire Every Day Support global sustainability educationVolunteer with Facing the FutureSign up to receive our News...

What is Facing the Future?

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, April 07, 2013 4:28 AM
A significant portion of this blog's audience probably finds Facing the Future through a basic web search. For those individuals, this blog post is for you!

What is Facing the Future? 
Here's the quick pitch: We are an education nonprofit that creates K-12 and undergraduate curriculum, and provides professional development (that is, teacher training) that develop 21st Century Skills like critical thinking, problem solving, systems thinking, and collaboration. The purpose of our curriculum is to equip students with the skills they need to succeed inside and outside the classroom. We do this by teaching 21st Century Skills through the lens of global issues like energy, governance, consumption, human rights, and many more. We believe these skills and this knowledge prepares students to be responsible and contributing global citizens.

For a brief introduction, and to hear from several teachers and students about our curriculum and training, take a look at the video linked above.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Teacher's Guide
Video
Exploring Global Issues
Professional Development

Linking to Current Events: Arkansas’ Oil Spill

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, April 04, 2013 10:44 AM
You may have read reports in recent days of an Exxon Mobile Corp pipeline that leaked an estimated five thousand barrels of crude oil on its way south from Canada last Friday. The leak happened in Arkansas, and cleanup is ongoing.

Events such as this one provide context for conversations about energy in general and our use of oil specifically, not to mention conversations about trade and economics. For example, where do you think most America’s oil comes from? You may be surprised by the answer.

According to the Energy Information Administration most of our oil is domestic, but beyond that Latin America and Canada are the United States’ two largest sources.

Latest News
Global Sustainability Education
Engaging Students Through Global Issues

3 Tips for Tech in the Classroom

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Saturday, March 30, 2013 11:58 AM
Last week the Fairfax Times printed an article on Ken Halla, a history teacher at Hayfield Secondary School in Alexandria, Virginia.

Halla is best known for running the teaching advice blog World History Teachers Blog, wherein he dispenses advice on teaching that is largely based on what he practices in the classroom on a daily basis. Many of the entries on this site surround use of technology in the classroom and how to effectively employ a “Flipped Classroom” model. For the uninitiated, here’s a helpful infographic from Forbes on the Flipped Classroom.

So why all the fuss about technology in the classroom? 

That’s what I’d like to tackle today with 3 Tips for Tech in the Classroom.

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We've Lowered Prices. But Why?

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, March 24, 2013 8:18 AM
I don’t know if you’ve heard, but Facing the Future dropped its prices significantly over the weekend. The purpose of this blog is threefold. Not only do I want to tell you about our price cuts, but I’d like to open your eyes to some of the other things our curriculum store has to offer, and I’d like to provide some context on how and why we decided to decrease our prices.

Let’s start with the numbers. 

These prices were already low compared to the industry standard, but now they’re very, very low. In fact, our lowest cost curriculum products now start at $4.99. 

Click here to read more.
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3 Reasons to Take the 2013 Teacher Survey

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, March 21, 2013 12:08 AM
You’ve seen our calls for you to “Let your voice be heard!” It’s a call for teachers to participate in our teacher survey. I’m sure a lot of  people see the image of our bugler and think “Why should I give up my precious time to take this survey?” That’s a valid question. Things being the way they are, most people are buried in email and social media notifications, with the vast majority of these messages asking for some sort of action from the reader.

Today I’ll share a little bit about the teacher survey. I’ll address why we bother to poll teachers and what we do with the data we collect. All this, and more, will be wrapped up in my “3 Reasons Why You Should Take the FTF  Teacher Survey.”
 
1. Discounts! Prizes!

Click here to read more.
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March eNews: Earth Day Edition

by host on Monday, March 11, 2013 12:00 PM
Earth Day News from Facing the Future Support global sustainability educationVolunteer with Facing the FutureSign up to receive our News...

Mapping Food Deserts in the US

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Monday, March 11, 2013 10:53 AM
NPR reported this morning on a new USDA map of the United States, which they call  the Food Access Research Atlas. It highlights the country’s food deserts. That is, places in this country where people do not have easy access to fresh, healthful food.

These food deserts exist for many reasons, but a basic definition of what a food desert is not is an area where supermarkets with fresh fruits and vegetables are within walking distance. Rural areas and economically depressed urban areas are the two main types of places they seem to occur.

Click here to read more.
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What Can One Person Do? An International Women's Day Profile

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, March 07, 2013 5:00 PM
International Women’s Day is today, March 8th!

On days such as these it’s easy to see global issues as big problems that an individual can’t even begin to address. But I’d like to challenge you to look at the world differently. And, if you’re a teacher, I’d like to encourage you to challenge your students to think about changes they can make in their own communities and the wider world. At Facing the Future, we think everyone can take positive action to help make the world a better place.

To mark International Women’s Day I asked Kate Vatter, who is involved with the state of Montana’s IWD efforts, to share her experience and her thoughts on taking action. I hope you enjoy it!

Click here to read more.
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International Women's Day

Everything You Need to Know About Service Learning

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Monday, March 04, 2013 6:34 PM
Take Action with Service Learning!

If you’ve spent much time using Facing the Future materials or looking around our website, you know that we encourage students to not only engage with important global issues, but we also ask students and teachers to seek positive solutions to global issues.
By focusing on positive solutions ask students to think about broad, long-term solutions to problems like poverty, consumption, and others, while also asking them to think about what they can do as an individual to address a global issue in their own community or the broader world.

By clicking the Take Action! tab on the Facing the Future website, you can access all kinds of service learning resources, as well as resources on all kinds of other other topics. And best of all, it's free!

Click here to read more.

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Teaching Students to Appreciate Multiple Perspectives with EGI

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Tuesday, February 26, 2013 10:18 AM
For the last few months the folks here at Facing the Future have worked hard to describe our upcoming full-course text, Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections. But we’re now less than one month away from the March 21st launch of the student text, so I’d like to share with you some of the high points of the book in order to give a taste of what this great content looks like. Over the next few weeks I’ll be providing examples of all the high-points we’ve mentioned on this blog, in newsletters, on fliers, and lots of other places.

Today I’ll take you through an example of one of my favorites: Point-Counter Point. Click here to read more and see an example.


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What is a Global Issue, Anyway?

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Monday, February 25, 2013 6:50 PM
Facing the Future’s latest curriculum text and teacher’s guide is called Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections. But what is a global issue? In this blog I dip in to Chapter 1 of Exploring Global Issues to share some of the basic concepts discussed in the book. By dedicating time to defining terms like global issues, sustainability, worldview, and others, Chapter 1 provides a sturdy foundation for engaging with the topics addressed in the rest of the book.

Take a look at this chapter, and think about how global issues are in balance, and exist in a context relative to, other global issues. What other terms do you see as necessary to define? Click here to read more.
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Exploring Global Issues: The Motion Picture

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, February 20, 2013 2:25 AM

If you’re looking to learn more about Facing the Future and Exploring Global Issues, or if you’re a fan of either, have we got something for you! We just launched our latest video, which is designed to briefly describe who we are, what we do, and what EGI is all about. Take two minutes and see what you think!

Click here to watch the video, or click the screenshot to the left to watch the video in its entirety. Or, click here to read more about the video we like to call Exploring Global Issues: The Motion Picture.

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Exploring Global Issues
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Exploring Global Issues

What's the Deal with the Teacher's Guide?

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Monday, February 18, 2013 3:54 AM
The Exploring Global Issues teacher's guide is a truly exceptional resource. With lesson plans, assessments, additional readings, videos, and much more, this text deserves your attention! In this blog post call attention to teacher's guide's in general, as they're sadly often overlooked, and share some of the high points of the Exploring Global Issues teacher's guide, which will be available on CD in March! Click here to read more.
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February eNews: World Water Day Edition

by host on Monday, February 11, 2013 11:14 AM
World Water Day News from Facing the Future Support global sustainability educationVolunteer with Facing the FutureSign up to receive our News...

Give a Special Gift this Valentine's Day

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, February 10, 2013 3:25 PM
This February make a gift to Facing the Future in honor of a special person in your life and help connect young people to the world.

Your gift will help students tackle critical global issues and take informed action. For example, recently, students at a high school in Washington State used a Facing the Future lesson to explore how global trade has impacted their daily lives by looking at an iconic Valentines' Day gift: a rose.

Click here to read more about about this lesson and how you can make a gift in honor of a loved one.

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Exploring Global Issues
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Linking Exploring Global Issues to Current Events

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Thursday, February 07, 2013 1:00 AM
The Exploring Global Issues teacher's guide is an incredibly flexible text. Lessons can be adapted to fit individual needs, or followed to the letter. Today's blog shows you how to use a lesson from EGI to discuss a news article covering a current event. Click here to read more.
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A Student's Perspective on Global Sustainability Education

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Sunday, February 03, 2013 10:24 AM
When high school student Delaney Evans entered an essay contest which asked how a book ‘has inspired you to help the earth,’ she chose to write about Facing the Future's student text It’s All Connected: A Comprehensive Guide to Global Issues and Sustainable Solutions. 

Click here to read more
 about Delaney's powerful learning experience! 
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It's All Connected

Introducing Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections

by blog@facingthefuture.org on Wednesday, January 30, 2013 8:33 AM

It’s an exciting time here at Facing the Future. We recently launched our new website design, and we’re counting down the days to the March launch of our newest curriculum resource Exploring Global Issues: Social, Economic, and Environmental Interconnections.

Click here to read more and learn about our limited-time pricing on this exciting new text!


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January eNews: A New Year, a New Website

by host on Monday, January 14, 2013 11:16 AM
January eNews Support global sustainability educationVolunteer with Facing the FutureSign up to receive our News...

December 2012 eNews

by host on Monday, December 10, 2012 11:23 AM
Want to inspire your students this fall? December 2012 eNews Facing the Future. Critical thinking. Global perspective. Informed action.

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August 2012 eNews

by host on Monday, September 10, 2012 8:26 PM
Want to inspire your students this fall? Back to School eNews Curriculum and Professional Development for K-12 Educators

Why Teach 21st Century Skills?

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July 2012 eNews

by host on Monday, July 09, 2012 4:28 PM
eNews Summer 2012 Visit facingthefuture.org eNews Summer 2012 Visit facingthefuture.org...

March 2012 eNews

by host on Monday, March 12, 2012 8:28 PM
Common Core State Standards PD Bulletin Common Core State Standards PD Bulletin Facing the Future. Critical thinking. Global perspective. Informed action....

November 2011 eNews

by host on Monday, November 14, 2011 11:42 AM
November Newsletter: Universal Children's Day Resources November Newsletter: Universal Children's Day Resources Facing the Future. Critical thinking. Global perspective. Informed action.

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September 2011 eNews

by host on Monday, September 12, 2011 12:48 PM
International Day of Peace Resources September Newsletter: International Day of Peace Resources Facing the Future. Critical thinking. Global perspective. Informed action.

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May 2011 eNews

by host on Monday, May 09, 2011 11:50 AM
May Newsletter: World Environment Day Resources May Newsletter: World Environment Day Resources Facing the Future. Critical thinking. Global perspective. Informed action.

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March 2011 eNews

by host on Monday, March 14, 2011 12:51 PM
Annual Educator Survey from Facing the Future March Newsletter: Global Youth Service Day Resources Facing the Future. Critical thinking. Global perspective. Informed action.

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January 2011 eNews

by host on Monday, January 10, 2011 11:53 AM
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December 2010 eNews

by host on Monday, December 13, 2010 11:58 AM
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September 2010 eNews

by host on Monday, September 13, 2010 12:59 PM
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August 2010 eNewsletter

by host on Monday, August 30, 2010 1:01 PM
August Newsletter: Peace Day Resources Please enjoy our August Newsletter: Peace Day Resources ...

May 2010 eNews

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May Newsletter: World Refugee Day Resources Please enjoy our May Newsletter: World Refugee Day Resources ...

March 2010 eNews

by host on Monday, March 15, 2010 1:09 PM
March Newsletter: Action Inspiring Earth Day & EE Week Resources Please enjoy our March Newsletter: Action Inspiring Earth Day & EE Week Resources ...

January 2010 eNews

by host on Monday, January 11, 2010 12:11 PM
January Newsletter: Service Learning in the New Year Greetings - please enjoy our January Newsletter: Service Learning in the New Year ...
 
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