Interactive Cultural Explrations



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“ICE” Programs provide schools with Micro-Media Enhanced Online Opportunities to learn about and experience other cultures while digitally interacting with peers in mediated environments.

In 2013 ICE will conduct a pilot activity between students at 3 high schools in Michigan and students in Palestine and Kenya. These participatory cross cultural interactions and dialogues will focus on topics chosen by students and teachers of social science, history, geography, diplomacy, humanities, ethnography, journalism and tourism.


METHOD: These participatory activities utilize the "micro-media" (cell phones, digital cameras, HD video, Tablets, scanners) production and visual literacy courseware OnLine Africa Knowledge Foundation is developing for 22 schools in the UNESCO Centres of Excellence in Journalism Education Programme and the African Virtual University.

Following initial free training, teams of teachers in participating schools will collaborate to create “micro-media” projects that actively engage students in seeking and creating their own filmed answers to common questions posed by many people about other cultures: How do they live? What’s a typical neighborhood like? What do they eat? How do they learn? How do they prepare meals? What are their grocery stores like? Do they have shopping malls like ours? How do they get married? What is the significance of cultural holidays? How do you celebrate the birth of a child? What’s it like on a farm? In a factory or mine?, etc. Answering these questions through interactive and participatory sight and sound media should make the learning experience more memorable, effective and enjoyable.

The resultant audio visual and multimedia “illuminators” will be short (2-5 minute) films, videos and slide shows created by participating students and teachers along mutually agreed upon narratives. The films and activities will be initially shared live over the Internet (via Skype, You Tube, Google Phone or other compatible platforms) where they will be discussed by engaged school populations.


MEDIA TRAINING BENEFITS: Participants will receive free online self-paced instruction in photography, digital design and HD video production to ensure high quality projects. Since 2009, we have been engaged with students and staff of the Senator Obama Secondary School in Kogelo, Kenya. Following initial training, students have been developing an ethnographic history of the village of President Obama’s father and are ready to share some of their photos with others. The ancestral village of Mr. Obama’s mother in Moneygall, Ireland will also be connected to schools in Kenya, Nigeria, Egypt, Jamaica and the Philippines. Similar projects will be developed in consultation with subscribers to our free websites.



ICE 2013-14 Academic Year Program has slots for only 2 more schools. You will be able to converse with journalist Gamal Nkrumah, son of Nigeria's first president, Kwame Nkrumah and other children of Africa's liberation movement leaders and soldiers. Two granddaughters of former Egyptian president, Anwar El Sadat are also scheduled to participate this year. Nora and Donia El Sadat will lead participants on a tour of President Sadat's native village and museum. Renowned Egyptologist, Ahmed Seddik will lead students on tours of Cairo's City of the Dead and Coptic Cairo for filming and on-line discussions with ICE. We will also conduct a digital music project in partnership with Trenchtown Digital Music Studio in Kingston, Jamaica and a photo art school in Guaibim, Brazil. Dr. Michael Cullinane, Associate Director of the Center for Southeast Asian Studies of University of Wisconsin at Madison will introduce his students in the Philippines to others throughout the African Diaspora to discuss the demographic origins of the modern Philippines.

If your school wishes to be considered for participating in ICE 2013-14 or 2014-15, please briefly (1-2 pages) define your goals, intended methods and expected outcomes in an E-mail with the SUBJECT: ICE.

CLICK HERE for more information.


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