Bringing African and Korean culture together in the classroom
Although many UNESCO Associated Schools (ASPnet) in Korea have been working on education for international understanding, African cultures and issues were not studied in depth until recently, when a number of them had a unique opportunity to encounter African people and their cultures.
In September 2010, the Korean National Commission for UNESCO brought five delegates from NGOs in Lesotho, Malawi, South Africa, Zambia and Zimbabwe to participate in a cross-cultural awareness programme from 7-9 September.
The African delegates came to Korea was to share their hands-on experience in the field of education with a group of 18 Korean volunteers who are leaving for African countries in October.
Accompanied by Korean volunteer interpreters, the African delegates visited UNESCO Associated Schools (ASPnet) in Gongju and Jeonju. The schools were located in distant areas where students have almost no opportunity to encounter African people and their cultures.
In each school, the delegates not only conducted African cultural classes to share their cultures and life experience with students but also spent time with local teachers learning about what makes Korean ASPnet schools unique. In addition, they had the opportunity to stay with local host families and experience an unparalleled level of cultural immersion and international friendship which will last a lifetime.
"I hope this programme can be a catalyst for teachers and students to broaden their horizons toward Africa." said Programme Coordinator Mr Myung-shin Kim, about this unique example of North-South-South cooperation and partnership with Africa.
UNESCO Associated Schools (ASPnet)