Updated 02/01/2013 05:00 AM
State of Education: Long distance learning
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Chinese educators speak with students and teachers at the Schodack Central School District, but this is more than just a visit. In fact, you could say it's an example of "long distance learning."
Schodack Superintendent Bob Horan said, "I did a visit over in China, visited about 15 different school districts looking for a school district that had similarities in our mission, their vision, and co-curricular activities."
And Tianjin School Number 57 turned out to be that district. The basic idea here is for both cultures to learn from each other, in more ways than one.
Horan said, "It's for student exchanges, not only just sending students there and students coming here, but to be able to partner students up via the Internet, distance learning, and video conferencing."
And all of this really changes the history books, now students can "tune in" to actual classes taking place on the other side of the planet, giving a whole new meaning to "world history."
Horan said, "There's a lot of interesting things that are happening in China that our students can be aware of and there are an awful lot of things that are happening here in the United States that Chinese students and teachers can take advantage of."
Student Rachel Baker said, "We've got different topics and it's basically the formation of the west, and so right now my topics are on how the Manifest Destiny worked its way in."
The two countries may be thousands of miles apart geographically, but they may learn a thing or two from each other when it comes to teaching styles.
Chinese Education Delegate Dr. Shuching Chen said, "For the Chinese side I think they're more interested in seeing the hands-on environment and participating in the teaching process from the student's side."
And the United States...
Dr. Chen said, "They have a more student involvement into the teaching process. This is the more important things, which I feel are better ways towards education."
The delegates from the Tianjin School also signed a partnership with the Schodack School District, to continue this international agreement...which many other schools are looking to participate in as well.