At Manhattan's PS 140, students in Tony Paulino’s middle school Spanish classes are exploring the geography, economics, and culture of South America, all without leaving their classroom.
They're using the Internet to follow the One Road South team of adventurers on a 14-month bicycle trip around the continent. Through a program called Reach The World, kids at 60 of the city's elementary and middle schools are getting a taste of global citizenship by following the One Road South bikers, a family traveling in Europe, a bike trek in Africa, and a Harlem teacher working with scientists in Antarctica through online videos, journals, and field notes.
Sometimes, students even get to meet the travelers they are following online. Three of the four One Road South bicyclists recently visited Paulino's classes to present a slide show about the places they plan to visit.
The students jumped in with questions, asking if the travelers were afraid of wild animals, running out of food, or going for 14 months without having a girlfriend.
But Reach the World isn't just for fun.