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Massachusetts Teacher of the Year Thanks Primary Source for Helping Launch Global Elective

16 May 2014

Jeff SheaIt has been a whirlwind of activity and media coverage since the Department of Elementary and Secondary Education (DESE) named Belmont High School's Jeff Shea the 2015 Massachusetts Teacher of the Year, and it's not slowing down anytime soon. As designated spokesperson for teachers statewide, Mr. Shea will regularly present on challenges faced by the profession, and he's embracing the role. "I'm looking forward to promoting global education on a larger scale." says Shea.

Back in 2010, Shea had a vision for a Global Leadership elective course that would not only increase his students' awareness of international issues but also encourage them to be civically involved and engaged in global issues. He knew what he wanted to accomplish, but he lacked the organizational pieces to help get it off the ground. After attending Primary Source's summer institute Teaching for Global Understanding in the 21st Century, Shea returned to Belmont with the tools he sought and the support he needed. "I got so much more than just content and materials from that course," says Shea. "Primary Source was so generous with their time, support and advice, including ideas for integrating technology that fit my student-centered approach to teaching. It was the most important professional development course I've ever taken."

Now a social studies elective open to 11th and 12th graders, Shea's Global Leadership course is a great example of how you can engage your classroom around global issues. "It's about creating meaningful learning experiences for your students," says Shea. "You have to take risks with your teaching. You have to get out of your comfort zone. Participating in Primary Source programs gave me the motivation to do just that."

Naturally, we're thrilled when innovative, global educators like Jeff Shea receive this kind of recognition. Teachers are the reason we exist and we couldn't be happier to have played a part in his success. "Primary Source has such a passion for our work – such a genuine desire to help and support teachers," says Shea. "It's who you are and I am so lucky to have connected with you in that summer course years ago."

Global Studies Students
Students in Jeff Shea's Global Leadership Course

 

Above: Belmont High School Teacher Jeff Shea

 

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