Restating the Question:
We, as civic educators of 21 Century Global Citizens must challenge our students to think critically about the different positions mentioned here by Dr. Stein. The idea of being a global citizen is not just something that belongs to Americans and students in America need to know that. That being said, all of the positions are not all bad and the various scripts within each position are, at least, attempts to understanding and engaging other global citizens and the idea of a broader global citizenship. Stein writes in her conclusion that indeed, these views are often strong and difficult to dislodge, being kept in place through repetition and entrenched institutional forces and individual attachments. She adds that unlearning may be a difficult task but a necessary one. The exercise of having students engage with maps of global citizenship, such as the one provided here or ones that they themselves collaboratively produce, offers one way of denaturalizing common sense scripts for thought and action in international engagements. By helping students to identify how these scripts operate in both educational contexts and other areas of their life, and by helping to illuminate the gifts and weaknesses of each script, such maps can also prefigure the imagination and enactment of other, less entrenched scripts. This brings us back to our original inquiry; why is it important to challenge students to be globally aware citizens AND engage them in becoming global issues/problem solvers?
To answer directly, it’s important because our world is becoming more and more connected each day, culturally, economically, politically, etc. As educators we must teach students to live beyond themselves and understand that they are a part of a much bigger story; not just American, but a global citizen. The large part of that work is to expand the critical thinking of students by sharing these different positions with them and showing them that while we need to be global problem solvers our ways as “The West” /Americans is not always the right way. To challenge them to go beyond what they have known and heard through random channels of society. Doing this will allow them to understand that they are a part of a community much larger than their own and that they should be participators in the story and not just spectators.