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PRESS RELEASE A Cross-Cultural Learning Experience between Canton and Cape Town



CANTON, Mich., May 27, 2014—A teacher at Achieve Charter Academy is about to embark on a global journey to establish a learning opportunity for students in her classroom, and students in a classroom in Cape Town, South Africa.
Middle school science teacher Kim Jaster will travel to Africa in July to teach students at Cape Academy of Math, Science, and Technology about solar cars and their relationship with alternative energy. She hopes this trip will be the first of many to share educational expertise about science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) skills.
“The heart of America’s educational renaissance is STEM and its connectedness is the secret,” said Jaster. “With it, students get the relevance they need to be more mindful about their learning.”
Jaster said the school is working in collaboration with Eastern Michigan University on this project. Achieve students will complete a science project in their classroom, make a video of how they did it, and send it with Jaster to share with the students at Cape Town as their first introduction.
Eventually, the goal is to have students in the two classrooms provide lessons to each other through the help of a computer technology called Raspberry Pi, a computer that functions without electricity which is in short supply in Africa.
The school has also partnered with the Sonlig Project to have the video and curricular content developed by our students and loaded onto a version of the Sonlig Mobile Digital library.  The students at Cape Town can use the devices to review the lessons and build their own solar cars.
Jaster said she is hopeful this project will take off quickly and provide her students with a greater global awareness. “I hope my students will have a new perspective that highlights education as a tool for a better life…not just a test score to achieve. When people touch hands with people across great distances, the quest for global interdependence and peace becomes reachable.”
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