Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Glober Trekker

I have this deep dark secret.

I’ve never really shared it with anyone.

My secret doesn’t exactly fit the image many have of me….the quiet unassuming married school marm who in the past has lugged home not just one but two large bags each night filled to capacity with papers to grade, materials to review and to plan lessons with, paperwork to complete, and an assortment of other effects that teachers just seem to accumulate.

Teachers just have that image...always doing the right thing, always saying the right thing, always being where they are expected to be, but I have this desire…

If I could….if the timing was right…..if I had the funds….if my health was better…..if I didn’t have so many obligations…if ….if….if….if….if…







I would run away.

Yes, you read that right.

ElementaryHistoryTeacher would love to run away.

The reason? Well, to travel, of course. I want to see and experience the world.

I want to see the Great Pyramid, the Great Wall of China, and see “the running of the bulls” in Pamplona, Spain.

I want to climb the Rockies, ride through the Alps, and see Mount Kilimanjaro.

I want to take a mud bath in China, take a cooking class in Thailand, and go on a safari in Tanzania, Africa.

I want to sleep in a Bedouin tent, belly dance in Istanbul, and explore the Greek and Roman ruins.

I want to watch the sunrise over the Grand Canyon, trace the route of Lewis and Clark, and actually lay on the stones where the Mayans performed their rituals.

I want to read a book in some quaint bookstore in England, I want to sip coffee sitting in a sidewalk café in Paris, and I want to lay in the sun topless like all the office girls do during their lunch hour in Malaga, Spain.

I want to ride the Orient Express across Europe, ride a lodge boat down the Amazon River and experience Victoria Falls via the Devil's Pool .

I want to see where Martin Luther nailed the 95 Theses on the door in Wittenberg, stand in St. Peter’s Square, and most importantly walk the path of Jesus through the Holy Land.

I want to skinny dip along the beaches of the Cook Islands….in particular one of the most beautiful places there…. Aitutaki Island.

Watch the video and you will see what I mean….

How did you like the music? Did you recognize it? It’s the theme to one of my most favorite travel shows.

You see, as much as I would like to visit all of the places mentioned above and do the things I listed the likelihood of any of them coming true at this point is next to nothing. I’m not looking for sympathy here….just being realistic. I might get to some of those things, but the reality of just running away and experiencing the world is unrealistic for me at this point for many reasons.

Therefore, I have to satisfy my desire vicariously.

I’m not usually a big fan of most travel shows, but Globe Trekker on PBS is one way that I can cure my wanderlust. The guides on the show travel the way I would like to. They explore the authentic culture of every region they visit yet they still hit on the important historical sites as well. Ian Wright, one my most favorite guides on the show states he enjoys “living cheap and getting dirty” on his travels, and I have to say a little of that would be interesting. Justine Shapiro, another host on the show, states, “The way to connect with other distinct cultures is to go with an open heart and spend time with the locals.” That would be part of my schtick if I was able to just …..GO.

In fact….the guides on the show are one of the reasons why I like it so much. There are several of them and they rotate through the episodes. They all have interesting backgrounds and bring their own little spin to the show. For example, Megan McCormick is a former English teacher in Japan. Zay Harding grew up in Hawaii and became interested in world cultures through the Boy Scouts, and Holly Morris is a print and media journalist with Adventure Divas.

From time to time I’ve used clips found at YouTube or the show’s main site in the classroom. These do need to be previewed for inappropriate content, but so many of the clips have value when teaching geography, world cultures or history. Most of the episodes can be searched by location. Often I’ve used them for independent study and allowed students to just pick something and run with it the way their heart takes them.

Sometimes THAT is when the best learning takes place.

The main website for Globe Trekker can be found here . Enjoy!


Dan Edwards said...

As the late, great Waylon Jennings once sang, "Drinkin' and Dreaming, knowing damn well I can't go....."

BUT, if we don't dream, or think about it, what else is there?

Sometimes it is good to just spontaneously drop everything and just go off and do "something different."

One of these days, I plan to just load up my wife and boys, and take off for a long drive to someplace we haven't been.....on new roads to not so far off from where we live places we just haven't see or trod upon......

Afterall, how many students will regret they don't get their work returned to them on Monday, graded?

Teacher Mom said...

Great lesson idea! Thanks.

EHT said...

You are very welcome Teacher Mom. have some wise words there. Thanks!

Sarah Ebner said...

A lovely post, thanks. I'd love to come on the journey (running away often sounds good to me!)

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