Local Resources for Global Education
Chicago has many resources for teachers interested in globalizing their classrooms. So while these may not be "local" to the neighborhood where I teach, they are "local" in the sense that they are within a reasonable drive. Each of the organization's names are hyper-linked, so clicking on them will take you to their websites.
The University of Chicago
The University of Chicago offers several departments which offer Educational Outreach programs providing teachers with Workshops, Institutes, and other classrooms supports for a wide range of International or Cultural issues.
The Center for International Studies
The Center for International studies "sponsors and coordinates a wide variety of activities related to research, teaching, curriculum, and public outreach on global and international topics."
The Center for East European and Russian / Eurasian Studies
The Center for East European and Russian / Eurasian Studies "is actively involved in helping educate the public about Eastern Europe, Russia, and the Former Soviet Union and serves as a link between the University of Chicago's specialists and members of the wider community." They offer speakers, resources, and other forms of educational outreach.
The Center for South Asian Studies
The Center for South Asian Studies offers a wide range of resources for educators. As well as offering lesson materials and supports, they also have speakers, offer workshops and institutes, cultural events and a lending library.
Center for East Asian Studies
The Center for East Asian Studies offers lectures, and a large library of East Asian materials.
The Center for Latin American Studies
The Center for Latin American Studies offers professional development opportunities for teachers with regards to improve knowledge of Latin American Issues.
The Center for Middle Eastern Studies
The Center for Middle Eastern Studies offers a wide range of services to teachers and educational organizations. They have speakers available to visit schools, workshops for professional development, Teacher Guides on a variety of Middle Eastern / Arabic subjects, and other resources for teachers.
The International House at the University of Chicago is technically a residence hall. However, the International House offers a "wide array of programs and activities" throughout the year. These programs include music and cultural performances, programs in conjunction with foreign consulates in Chicago, lectures and and language exchanges.
The Chicago Cultural Alliance offers many programs, events, and workshops for families, businesses and educational organizations in the Chicago Area. CPDUs are available for teachers who attend their "Heritage Matters" events. There are also many youth programs offered through the Chicago Cultural Alliance. Members of the Alliance include 34 different cultural museums and organizations who work together to increase cross-cultural understandings in the Chicago area.
Chicago Area Museums
Libraries / Research Centers
The Newberry Library has many resources and opportunities for teachers. Some of their programs include:
Argonne National Laboratory offers incredibly strong STEM professional development and resource materials for teachers. One of the programs they have is a Sustainability Workshop covering carbon-footprint and environmental issues that can be applied to a global unit.
Fermilab also offers incredibly strong STEM professional development and resource materials for teachers including workshops on the Prairie environment, and energy. These topics can be applied to global units fairly easily.
Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO's)
The Chicago Council on Global Affairs is "an independent, non-partisan organization committed to educating the public - and influencing public discourse - on global issues of the day." It offers over 150 public and leadership programs each year as well as publishing studies covering a wide variety of topics. While the Chicago Council on Global Affairs is not something you would take your class to, it is a tremendous resource for information on global issues as well as events and programs that you as a professional can attend. In addition, they offer many opportunities for people to get involved in Chicago through fellowships and volunteering.
Some incredible resources from the Chicago Council are:
Chicago is the World is a media organization dedicated to providing "a wide audience to Chicago’s diverse ethnic community and culture through its news outlets, cultural activities, leaders and institutions." The Chicago is the World blog provides information about global issues and how they are affecting people here in Chicago. They also have a directory of ethnic media in the Chicago area including African-American, Latin American, European-American, and Asian-American TV channels, radio stations, newspapers, magazines and blogs.
While the Peace Corps is a national organization, they offer opportunities to invite a returned Peace Corps volunteer to come to your classroom as a Speaker. In addition, they offer classroom resources such as lesson plans, publications, and even the opportunity to correspond with active Peace Corps Volunteers around the world.
The United Nations Association of the United States of America - Greater Chicago Chapter (UNA-GCC) is an organization that works with schools, colleges, politicians, and other organizations in the Chicago area to "build knowledge, understanding, informed opinion, and new ideas on the United Nations." Some of the initiatives they have include GenUN which is a student-initiative to get Middle-schoolers, High-schoolers and college students involved in the United Nations. They also have a program called "Girl UP" to get American girls involved in helping girls in other areas of the world.
World Chicago is a non-profit organization that brings delegates from around the world to Chicago. Their Education Initiative brings many of these delegates into classrooms as guest speakers. They also provide professional development for international educators to come to Chicago and meet with educators here.