Connecticut Geographic Alliance


CGA Member Chosen for 2013 Grosvenor Teacher Fellow Program

Amy Lake of Lakeville was one of fourteen educators selected as this year’s Lindblad Expeditions National Geographic Grosvenor Teacher Fellows and spent part of her summer in the Arctic aboard the Lindblad expedition ship National Geographic Explorer. The Fellows program recognizes teachers who best demonstrate excellence in geographic education, and provides an opportunity for them to experience geography through once-in-a-lifetime experiences and to use those experiences in their classrooms.

This is the seventh year of the Fellows program, established to honor former National Geographic Society Chairman Gilbert M. Grosvenor’s lifetime commitment to geographic education. Cabin space aboard the National Geographic Explorer was donated in perpetuity to the National Geographic Society by Sven-Olof Lindblad and Lindblad Expeditions to mark Grosvenor’s 75th birthday in 2006 and to honor his service in enhancing and improving geographic education across the United States. Additional support for the 2013 program was provided by Google and the Children and Nature Network as well as private funders.

Each year, K-12 educators from around the country are encouraged to apply for this one-of-a-kind professional development opportunity, with the object of enhancing their geographic learning through direct experience, so they can bring that knowledge back to their classrooms and lesson plans.

As a Fellow, Ms. Lake participated in an in-depth expedition to Arctic Svalbard.  She experienced landscapes, wildlife and cultures unique to this part of the world, including the midnight sun and formidable glaciers as well as polar bears, walruses, and whales. Led by expert Lindblad-National Geographic expedition teams including a National Geographic photographer and an undersea specialist, Ms. Lake gained a wealth of knowledge to develop activities for her classroom and to share with professional colleagues on returning home.  Earlier in the spring, the 2013 Grosvenor Teacher Fellows traveled to Washington, D.C., to participate in a pre-voyage workshop with hands-on sessions for learning photography, using Google tools to share their stories, and networking with previous Fellows to maximize their experience.

“This program recognizes outstanding educators for their commitment to improving geographic literacy and inspiring tomorrow’s leaders to be responsible caretakers of our ocean and our planet,” said Sven-Olof Lindblad, founder of Lindblad Expeditions. “We are delighted that these educators will journey to the Arctic with us, and we are proud to support a group of Fellows who are so strongly committed to hands-on geographic education.”

“This partnership between Lindblad Expeditions and National Geographic ideally combines our two missions,” said John Fahey, chairman of the National Geographic Society and the National Geographic Education Foundation. “We believe in the value of educational travel as well as an understanding of geography and the world around us. Lindblad’s programs are the best, and Fellows will have experiences they will never forget, which will prepare them to continue inspiring generations of young people.”

Lake is a middle school social studies teacher at Lee H. Kellogg School in Falls Village, Connecticut, who infuses geographic concepts and skills into her daily lessons.  For nearly thirty years, she has empowered students to be involved citizens, acting on their learning to benefit their community and wider world.  A 2010 Fulbright Fellow, her experiential classroom is featured in the documentary film “Passion to Teach,” to be released this spring.  

To learn more about this opportunity and to watch video of Grosvenor Teacher Fellows from previous years, visit www.natgeoed.org/gtf. To become more involved in geography education, contact your State Geographic Alliance at http://alliances.nationalgeographic.com/.


 

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