By GEEO Staff
World travel as professional development for teachers is a new concept to some. Did you know that traveling as an educator can have a lasting positive impact on classrooms, schools, and communities around the world? Read on for GEEO’s top reasons that teachers should travel!
1. Connect with other inspired & inspiring teachers from around the world.
Over half of teachers that travel with GEEO are solo travelers when our programs begin, and everyone returns home with lifelong connections to other passionate educators. Many of our solo travelers even end up returning to GEEO programs with teachers they’ve met on previous programs!
2.You deepen your well of inspiration before & after your trip.
Many of the teachers that have traveled with us say that their GEEO program keeps them fueled up & inspired throughout the school year. Teaching can be one of the most rewarding but also one of the most demanding professions, so creating time for self-care throughout the school year and during your breaks is essential. Making time for the things you love (like traveling!) is a big part of self-care. Your GEEO trip will be what you look forward to & reminisce about during those tougher school days.
3. Spark wonder in your students & your entire school.
Many students may not have the opportunity to travel and may not even be aware of the existence of the places you will see. By traveling, you become a window to the infinite wonder of the world for your colleagues and students, opening doors to people, places, and possibilities they never knew existed.
4. Be a role model for your students.
Every day on TV, online, and even at home, students witness bad examples of what it means to be a responsible, caring citizen. With xenophobia and closed-mindedness running rampant in countries all around the world, students need to be around adults who aren’t afraid of differences but celebrate them. As a teacher, you are charged with educating the next generation and shaping the future. Your travels and openness to new adventures will help your students grow into the open minded, innovative, kind, and curious adults that our world needs.
5. Bring a depth of knowledge to your students that you can’t find in a textbook.
Imagine seeing the Terracotta Warriors firsthand and then getting to teach your history class about the Chinese farmer that discovered them when he was digging a well. Or imagine using the architectural design of Machu Picchu as inspiration for a math unit, cooking an authentic Ethiopian recipe in FACS, using housewares from a market in Oman to explain the chemistry of silver. Foreign language teachers already know that having one-on-one conversations in the native language of the place you’re visiting give you a deeper insight to the local culture & customs. Having first hand experience in another country helps teachers deliver the wonders of the world directly to students in a way no textbook ever could.
6. Take advantage of those long breaks from work.
Your friend Tina in corporate accounting may get paid double your salary, but does she have several months of vacation a year? No, Tina does not. Your winter break, spring break, and summer break are a chance for you to recharge, fill your mind with new knowledge, and jump back into the classroom with another passport stamp and lifelong memories to boot. Every GEEO trip is subsidized for educators so that traveling the world is more affordable. CPA Tina can keep her 10 days of vacation a year, thanks.
7. Teachers are lifelong learners.
It’s no secret: teachers are the best learners! Travel satisfies your craving for new knowledge. It enlightens you to new avenues of research and intricacies in your subject area that you wouldn’t have encountered without leaving home.
8. You make the world a better place!
As part of their 2030 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), the United Nations has named global citizenship education (GCED) as one of the components to “a more peaceful, tolerant, inclusive, and safe world.” One of the 17 SDGs is Quality Education, and GCED is one of the key factors in realizing quality education for all children around the world. By traveling and teaching your students how to be good global citizens, you are truly contributing to a better future for our society & planet. If you’re interested in learning more, check out GEEO’s educator resources as well as UNESCO’s publication on Global Citizenship Education Topics & Learning Objectives.
9. You become part of a global movement.
Each teacher that travels with GEEO impacts about 100 students a year–that’s 100 future leaders who are gaining intercultural competence, global citizenship education, and fresh perspectives that they may not have otherwise encountered without their travel-loving teacher. Since GEEO began in 2007, we’ve served nearly 3,000 teachers, who have in turn shared global perspectives with hundreds of thousands of students. With our free educator resources, we make it even easier for you to teach your students about new cultures and the basics of being a global citizen.
10. Because it’s fun!
Seriously, really fun.
As you can see, on top of the personal satisfaction and adventure that travel brings, your experiences in new countries & cultures bring new life to your classroom, school, and community. Every GEEO teacher travel program is discounted 5% to 15% off what you’d pay elsewhere, we offer free educator resources to our travelers, and you can earn PD and graduate credit while traveling. Ready to book your teacher travel program with us? Check out the programs we’re offering this year, or feel free to contact us with any questions. Happy teaching & safe travels!