The beginning of Wednesday, October 23 was a bit unusual for my Ethics class. Part of it was because it was Spirit Week at the Upper School, and students arrived dressed in a variety of costumes representing different countries from around the world. Mostly, however, it was because for the next ninety minutes they would be on an in-school field trip, engaged in an international video conference with students in the World Religions class at Patrick Fogarty Catholic High School in Orillia, Ontario, Canada. The ensuing conversation, facilitated by Anna Wright in London, with IT support from another individual in India, focused on the communities, faith, and values of the respective students.
The VC, as it is called, was hosted by Faith to Faith (F2F), a program for students sponsored by the Tony Blair Faith Foundation, and was the end result of a number of learning modules in which students learned to engage in meaningful and respectful conversation with students from other cultures or faiths. Promoting interfaith dialogue and understanding is a key mission of the Tony Blair Faith Foundation. While the students in Canada were not too different from their Florida counterparts, everyone agreed that as a first VC it would go in the record books as a successful one.
“The video conference with Canada was really cool because not only did we talk about religion, we also got an understanding of the daily life of kids our own age in another country.” –Hannah Lee ’17
Next up for the Ethic class? A VC with students in an Eastern European country. The time difference is always a bit of a challenge.
Holy Trinity Episcopal Academy