THINKING GLOBALLY: Wayland resident Carl Hobert, founder and executive director of the Axis of Hope Center for International Conflict Prevention in Boston, traces his devotion to global diplomacy to the court-ordered busing mandate that brought youth from all nationalities and religions to his high school in Minneapolis.
Hobert and his football teammates bonded over their love of the sport, and he learned about their cultures on the bus rides to games and visits to their homes.
“That really drove home the idea of peaceful coexistence during my formative years,” said Hobert, now an instructor in the Boston University School of Education.
“I went on to study Mother Teresa, Martin Luther King, and Gandhi, and the whole idea of civil disobedience — specifically for me, civil disobedience in educating youth — became a mantra for me.”
In his newly published book, “Raising Global IQ: Preparing Our Students for a Shrinking Planet,’’ Hobert draws on his 30 years of experience in education in promoting the use of role-playing to introduce global issues in kindergarten through high school, while simultaneously developing communication and negotiation skills.
In his book, Hobert says that teachers can boost the global IQs of their students in several ways while teaching the basics of English, math, science, and US history. Examples include emphasizing greater language and cultural fluency, following international news coverage of world events, videoconferencing with peers in another country, traveling abroad for service-learning projects, and volunteering in the local community.
According to Hobert, these activities give students practice in respecting different perspectives while preparing them for the diplomatic, economic, and social challenges they will face as adults.
“I want this book to be a powerful statement about the condition of contemporary US education,” Hobert said. “I hope it’s going to be an insightful proposal for the transformation of the curriculum in US schools, because the world is getting smaller and flatter.”
For more information, visit www.axisofhope.org.
LESSONS IN PHILANTHROPY: Fourteen ninth-graders at the Fenn School in Concord recently presented checks totaling
$9,000 to three area nonprofit organizations as the culmination of their Youth in Philanthropy program.
The students are Kyler Hall of Southborough, Reid Shilling of Lincoln, Andrew Najda of Concord, Acton residents Leo Saraceno and Mitchell Groves, Marcus Mazzotti of Medford, Westford residents Mike Demsher and John Hart, and Sudbury residents Jake Goorno, Zack Lisman, Max Cantara, Nate Winneg, Dillon Cronin, and Gavin Black.
According to Tom Hudner, director of advancement at the Fenn School, this is the program’s eighth year. It is made possible through an endowed fund established by an anonymous donor and administered by a Natick-based organization, the Foundation for MetroWest, at five Concord schools: Fenn, Nashoba Brooks School, Concord-Carlisle Regional High School, Middlesex School, and Concord Academy.
The Fenn students, who met every other Tuesday before school for six months, did extensive research to narrow down hundreds of local nonprofits, made site visits, and ultimately based the final selections on their areas of interest and the potential impact of their donations.
They contributed $2,500 to the Discovery Museums in Acton to support the “Especially for Me” programs for children with autism and hearing loss; $3,000 to Cambridge-based Heading Home for “starter kits” of furniture and essential housewares to benefit three families; and $3,500 to Buddy Dog Humane Society in Sudbury.
The Buddy Dog Humane Society gained extra support when one of the boys returned with his family to adopt a dog he had met during the site visit.
Hudner said it was compelling for the students to understand the scope of the need in local communities, and to have the ability to make a real and significant impact.
“It was very encouraging and impressive to see the boys so engaged in the process and thoughtful about how they were going about it,” he noted. “It was enjoyable to be a part of it.”
SPECIAL RECOGNITION: Several local residents were honored at the United Way of Tri-County’s annual recognition event, which highlights individuals and companies that have made an impact in their communities. The gathering was held last month at the Sheraton Framingham Hotel and Conference Center,
Debbie Beausoleil, an 85-year-old volunteer at the Marlborough Senior Center, earned the MetroWest/495 Corridor Volunteer of the Year Award . The President’s Award was presented to Timothy Flanagan, president of Framingham State University, for outstanding service and dedication to the community through the regional United Way.
The Lifetime Achievement Award went to Gerald Gaw, former superintendent of Clinton’s school system, for his consistent dedication to improving the quality of life in area communities and inspiring others to volunteer. The United Way’s top honor, the Summit Award, was presented to the TJX Cos. of Framingham and FM Global for their consistent support.
The keynote speaker was former Boston Bruins icon Derek Sanderson, who describes his off-ice struggles to overcome alcohol and substance abuse in his new autobiography, “Crossing the Line: The Outrageous Story of a Hockey Original.” A film about his life, which producer Edward Burns has tentatively titled “Turk,” is in preproduction.
GUEST APPEARANCE: Rick Fingerman of Arlington
(inset) was recently a guest on “That Cancer Show,” a call-in radio program that provides people living in and around Raleigh, N.C., with an opportunity to ask questions and discuss their experiences with cancer.
Fingerman provided advice for managing finances, debt, and credit when faced with cancer. He was joined on the program by Deborah Toffler, from the Shapiro Center for Patients and Families at the Dana-Farber Cancer Institute in Boston.
Fingerman, who is founder and president of Newton-based Financial Planning Solutions, is a member of the Financial Planning Association of Massachusetts. Since 2008, he has volunteered his services for a program that pairs members of the Financial Planning Association of Massachusetts with Dana-Farber cancer patients and their families.
For more information about the organization, visit www.fpama.org.
MAKING LEARNING FUN: Adena Walker of Brookline is
among seven actors in the Boston Children’s Theatre ongoing production of “Schoolhouse Rock!” It is being performed at 2 p.m. Sunday, and wraps up with 2 p.m. shows Saturday and next Sunday, at the Boston Center for the Arts, 539 Tremont St. She is a graduate of Brookline High School and Wagner College.
The musical, mixing entertainment with lessons in multiplication, science, government, and grammar, is based on the popular Saturday morning cartoons of the 1970s and 1980s. The production’s choreographer is Ali Struyk of Framingham.
For tickets and more information, call 617-933-8600 or visit www.bostonchildrenstheatre.org.
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