Goucher College receives Fulbright-Hays grant to develop African-centered curricula with Baltimore-area educators
Fourteen educators and administrators from Goucher College and Baltimore-area schools are taking part in the “Bringing African Studies into the Curriculum: A Multilayered Approach” program as part of the Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad (GPA) Program to focus on incorporating African studies in both K-12 and college curricula.
Fourteen educators and administrators from Goucher College and Baltimore-area schools are taking part in the “Bringing African Studies into the Curriculum: A Multilayered Approach” program as part of an award Goucher received from the Fulbright-Hays Group Projects Abroad (GPA) Program. The GPA is a part of the United States Department of Education, and the Goucher grant will focus on incorporating African studies in both K-12 and college curricula.
Goucher has partnered with the African Leadership University’s campuses in Kigali, Rwanda, and Pamplemousses, Mauritius, to organize the program overseas. Participants from Goucher, ACCE, Baltimore City College High School, Bard High School Early College, KIPP Academy, and Roland Park Elementary/Middle School will return from the four-week program on July 13, 2019.
“Our aim for this project is to become part of a small but growing cohort of educators who can model and implement a curriculum that promotes African people and places as subjects in their own right,” said Eric Singer, Goucher professor and project director for the grant. “We aim to increase cultural competency among U.S. students via exposure to Africana studies-infused curricula by equipping their educators with the resources and experiences necessary to reinvent contemporary, exclusive curricula and coursework.”
The goals of the research trip to Mauritius and Rwanda are to empower participants to acquire substantive knowledge about critical societal challenges in the two states and to develop and refine pedagogical approaches and practices that can form the basis for a globalized and Africanist curriculum. With these goals and objectives in mind, participants will work individually and together to develop new curricula and teaching tools inclusive of African themes, resources, and pedagogical approaches. Faculty members will develop syllabi and learning modules/units, and the middle and high school teachers and administrators will develop lesson plans and training opportunities for their peers.
Singer, who is also the higher education facilitator for the program, will work closely with Goucher faculty to assist in the development of syllabi that reflect African studies and the program experience. Angela Schaffer, Goucher’s director of sponsored research and corporate and foundation relations, is the program’s assistant director and K-12 facilitator and will work closely with the middle and high school educators to develop lesson plans and training modules reflective of the “Bringing African Studies into the Curriculum” project theme.
While overseas, the participants will learn from African Leadership University faculty members in daily seminars and visit local sites and organizations in the afternoons and evenings that allow them to explore aspects of education, politics, civic engagement, history, and economics in the host countries.
This fall, Goucher will host two symposium events on campus to present their work to the community and share the resources developed during the program. One symposium will focus on the K-12 teacher participants, who will present their lesson plans to their local peers, and the second will feature Goucher faculty participants presenting their syllabi to the local higher education community.
A “virtual toolkit” website will also be built to host these syllabi and lesson plans, as well as supporting resources, and will be made available to the public.
“The symposium events and virtual tool kits will help our efforts to multiply the effect and impact of the program,” said Schaffer. “We hope that these efforts will help U.S. education move further in the direction of inclusion and diversity.”