While we are confined in our homes, the world is shrinking around us. This past week I had the amazing opportunity to provide the keynote for the International Summit on Early Years, or ISEY 2020, originated in India. I learned so much about the shrinking world as we developed a plan for making new connections – a dream that became possible.
When I first received the invitation to be a part of this summit, I looked on my globe to locate India. I had never been to India but had read about this beautiful country. I wondered how far India was from my home in Tennessee in the United States. A search on a mobile device told me it was 7,750 miles from my home to Delhi, India. What did I have to share with leaders, teachers, and parents in this distant land? How could we make the impossible possible? What topics would connect to early childhood educators in India?
I began collaborating with the Summit Chair, Meghna Yadav and her colleagues, Jananee Gangadhar and Akshay Chpora. I found that we share a concern. We all wanted to create a wonderful world that supported the development of young children. Early Educators in India were interested in developing creative thinkers, problem solvers, and communicators. Our common commitment helped us overcome some of the challenges that are a part of this new adventure. The first issue was the time difference – a nine-and-a-half-hour difference. How can we do a live keynote for a conference that is originating nine hours from me? What platform would work for India and my team in the US? So many questions and issues to be addressed. However, we developed a plan of action and solved the problems as they appeared.
Just Do it!
On Sept 4, I presented LIVE the Keynote on Meeting the Challenge of the 21st Century at 7:30 AM in Tennessee and 5:00 PM time in India. We used an online platform called StreamYard and connected our mobile phones by WhatsApp. Over 2,500 people watched in India, UK, US, and Finland. Although we were thousands of miles apart, we connected virtually, answered questions, and celebrated Uniting for Young Children theme as we strive together to nurture their creative thinking.
When we feel so isolated today, it is wonderful to realize that people throughout the world share similar interest in developing the creative potential of ALL children. We are connected, we are working together, and we can make a difference in the lives of Young Children.
Dedicated to expanding the thinking of All Young Children!