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Best Global and Cross-Cultural Education Apps and Websites

Use these global perspective and cross-cultural education tools to raise the stakes of learning, creating authentic learning opportunities that build empathy and broaden students' perspectives. Through the study of other places and cultures, students can even better understand their own culture (and biases and privileges). They can explore the similarities and differences among people, and the shared global challenges -- like climate change and inequality -- that require global, cross-cultural collaboration and deep empathy. These picks will help students build these skills. Students will also grasp how big -- and small -- the world really is, and that it's full of discoveries to make and problems to solve. 

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Homes by Tinybop

Explore homes -- and cultures -- around the world in exquisite detail

Bottom line: Offers a delightful and accessible way for kids to learn about the world's cultures.

One Globe Kids - All Friends

Engaging stories, activities introduce kids to peers around the world

Bottom line: A smart, thoughtful way to learn about the lives of kids around the world.

Google Earth

Cool geographical exploration tool has endless classroom applications

Bottom line: Google Earth is an engaging and completely open-ended app perfect for use across the educational spectrum.

National Geographic Kids

Stunning photos and in-depth stories of Earth's peoples and wildlife

Bottom line: This amazing collection of multimedia resources teaches kids about animals, habitats, countries, and cultures.

Newsela

Absorbing daily news stories offer kids just-right learning content

Bottom line: Up-to-date, high-interest articles meet students right at their level: Use this robust tool to bolster students' nonfiction reading practice.

The Wonderment

Ambitious global community aims for public good through student engagement

Bottom line: A powerful, improving social network for exploring the world and effecting positive change.

National Geographic Education

Top geography resource site provides global exploration opportunities

Bottom line: This is a must-bookmark site for classrooms across the curriculum hunting for inspiring geography-based resources.

Expeditions

Fire up the warp drive to bring VR field trips to your classroom

Bottom line: With stunning scenes and a flexible delivery method, your students will thank you for journeying together through space and time.

Oddizzi

Kids travel the world, cultivate global curiosity and responsibility

Bottom line: Kids get a sense of culture and global responsibility via kid-friendly articles and great multimedia.

Google Earth

Virtual globe shines with breathtaking features, endless possibility

Bottom line: Outstanding features, interactivity, and astonishing versatility -- the virtual total package for classroom teachers and student explorers.

Google Earth VR

Explore the world with an incredible new perspective and sense of scale

Bottom line: An amazing experience that brings the world to life, despite the heavy investment in VR required.

PenPal Schools

Give students global perspective with pen pal projects in any subject

Bottom line: A thoughtful, ready-to-go platform that facilitates authentic, cross-cultural collaboration.

ePals

Kids learn together in well-rounded, collaborative global classroom

Bottom line: A safe communication system and excellent learning materials help create a global youth community.

StrataLogica

High-quality customizable maps help students understand their world

Bottom line: This map app takes time to learn to use but offers both teachers and students highly useful tools for creating custom maps and interactive social studies and science presentations.

Fantasy Geopolitics

Impressive fantasy "sports" game engages students on current events

Bottom line: This game could be the hook that gets students engaged with international news.

Google Maps

Cool extras bolster top navigation app

Bottom line: Google Maps is an essential navigation tool that can empower students to explore their world.

Facing History and Ourselves

A wealth of resources explore racism, prejudice, and anti-Semitism

Bottom line: These valuable materials empower students to understand and address difficult ethical choices -- past and present.

NASA Global Climate Change - Vital Signs of the Planet

Tons of climate change info from expert sources in one easy place

Bottom line: This is a one-stop shop for climate change info, from basic intro content to practical guides and raw data; good for middle schoolers and up.

Gapminder

Interactive animated charts explore global development trends

Bottom line: Gapminder brings meaning to what otherwise might be considered “boring” numbers; students learn about social, economic, and environmental development.

Stop Disasters!

Slick sim explores global natural disasters

Bottom line: Few other browser-based sims better illustrate the potential of gaming for learning about serious issues in our world.

Your Commonwealth

Engage with passionate international perspectives from youth

Bottom line: Offers a rich variety of news and opinion stories on global issues, and its young writers will get U.S. students hooked on civic engagement.

Write the World

Global community helps young writers write, revise, think, and grow

Bottom line: With interest-based writing prompts and thoughtful feedback from peers and pros, this is a great tool for writing for authentic audiences.

Bury Me, My Love

Moving portrayal of the dangers and uncertainty of a Syrian refugee

Bottom line: It effectively connects students with the harrowing journey of a Syrian refugee, even though some of the interactive elements are underwhelming.

Global Oneness Project

Dynamic multimedia resources explore life experiences around the world

Bottom line: Unique approach to incorporating global issues into the curriculum; monthly stories capture interdisciplinary topics.

Fate of the World: Tipping Point

Complex global-influence game in which players’ choices rule the world

Bottom line: Complex multi-issue game succeeds in teaching world politics and global development while building perspective and decision-making skills.

Trans-Atlantic Slave Trade Database

Deep, complex database is challenging but a peerless research tool

Bottom line: This is a highly academic site for better and for worse; it's filled with deep, research-backed resources and primary sources but is intimidating without clear guidance.

1979 Revolution: A Cinematic Adventure Game

Violent, immersive view of revolution engages despite tricky interface

Bottom line: This important historical experience is the perfect start for more global understanding, but the challenging interface may get in the way of learning.

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