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Introduction- Sandra Makielski

Hi All!  — Can’t wait to meet everyone in person!

1.  I have always wanted to be a teacher and I have always been a teacher.  I am originally from Michigan but my first teaching job was in Montgomery County, Maryland for 5 years.  From there, I moved to Rhode Island.  Going from a county school system with more than 130 elementary schools to a town system with 4 elementary schools was a big change.  I have taught grades 2-8 during my professional career.  Currently, I teach 7th grade geography, eastern hemisphere to 100 students in a public school.  I LOVE my curriculum.  My district is the last district in the state to teach geography.  Most districts in Rhode Island teach two years of American History.
2.  This course is extremely important to me because it supports what I teach in the classroom.  I want to present my students with authentic and accurate information that goes beyond the text book.  The media often paints the Middle East as a scary place so by my traveling to Jordan, this will reassure my students that there are safe places to explore.  I hope to help my students understand that although Jordan may be very different from Rhode Island, we still share many similarities.

3.  I am always searching for opportunities to travel to the eastern hemisphere so that I may better instruct my students about Asia and Africa.  I am looking forward to networking with like-minded individuals in Jordan and with the group members. I am probably loaded with misconceptions that I hope to clarify and clear up.  I love meeting new people and I hope the food is as delicious as I imagine it to be.  I like to hike and the home stay seems to be the most exciting and intriguing aspect of this adventure.