TEACHERS' ZONE:
About the Odyssey's World Trek
The Mexico Trek!

 

What Is The Odyssey World Trek?

   

The Odyssey World Trek is an interactive world trek beginning in January of 1999, following the Mexico Trek. Its mission is to use the power of communications technology to promote global community and to improve our own communities through youth service.

How will The Odyssey accomplish this mission? The Trek and the Web site together form the core of our efforts. Ten volunteers will travel the world for two years by land and sea, without the benefit of air travel. They will stop at ten historically and culturally significant sites -- in Guatemala, Peru, Mali, Zimbabwe, Egypt, Israel, Turkey, Iran, India and China -- to volunteer with local grassroots organizations. They will build partnerships with students and other organizations around the globe, that will last long beyond the limited time of their stay.

Via The Odyssey's Internet-based Web site, an anticipated one million students will share in the experiences of the trekkers, learning about different cultures, exploring urgent global issues and discovering ways to effect positive change in their own communities. The intention of these linked activities is to inspire and facilitate students' becoming involved in their own communities and in world communities, through proactive experiences.

A scenario can help illustrate the dynamic nature of the program:

Upon arrival at each of the ten key cities, six of the trekkers will pair off to travel to three different communities, each within a day's travel of the base city, where they will live for six weeks. They will assist their hosts in doing work that has been organized by and for the benefit of the local people. At the same time, the trekkers will record video and audio, take digital photographs, create activities that re-enact important trek events, and do interviews with community members, which they will relay back to the Web site through the use of laptop computers and satellite uplinks.

Meanwhile, the four other trekkers will stay in the central city and take occasional trips to significant nearby sites, exploring the region's geography, culture and history as well as coordinating technological and travel-related logistics for the whole group. Students and teachers will have the opportunity to help define the group's explorations by making suggestions and requests through the interactive areas of the Web site. Back in the United States, the Web Site Production and Education Teams will edit the data being sent back and add it to the Web site. As soon as new materials are incorporated onto the site, they will be immediately accessible to anyone with a connection to the World Wide Web! The domestic teams will also continually add new curriculum and instructional materials to the site for teachers to use in their classrooms.

After six weeks at a particular location, the trekkers will move on to the next destination, visiting important sites en route. Students and teachers again will help determine the travel routes through the Internet-based links, making the journey a truly interactive experience for the trekkers, students and teachers alike.

Want more general information on the World Trek and The Odyssey organization? Go to The Odyssey website!

 

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