Friday, October 7, 2011
Westminster College faculty and staff Dr. SoYoung Kang, Diana Reed, and Deborah Roud presented at the Pennsylvania Council for International Education annual conference Sept. 22-24 in Harrisburg.
The conference theme, "Our Students, Our Communities, Our Future: Global Education in Pennsylvania," was reflected in the Westminster presentation, "Developing a Cultural Exchange Partnership between Westminster College Preschool Lab (New Wilmington, Pa.) and Yerang Preschool (South Korea)."
The goals for the partnership were to establish communication with another country; to introduce young children to a different culture; and to learn more about South Korean children, schooling, traditions, language, and activities.
"We wanted our children to consider similarities and differences among individuals from another country because we live in a small, rural, fairly homogenous community," said Kang, associate professor of education.
The two schools exchanged names, ages, and photos of the students. Yerang Preschool shared information about one of their holidays, Chusok Harvest Festival, and Westminster Preschool sent a photo booklet about Thanksgiving.
Kang received an Elizabeth Breathwaite Mini-Grant to support the research and cultural exchange program.
The Westminster College Preschool Lab, established in 1990, is a multipurpose facility that serves the College and the community. Designed by early childhood experts, the laboratory school incorporates innovative curriculum, well-trained staff, developmentally appropriate equipment, and individual attention. The preschool is accredited by the National Academy of Early Childhood Programs.
Kang, who has been with Westminster since 2007, earned an undergraduate degree from Korea University and master's and Ph.D. from the University of Tennessee.
Reed, preschool head teacher, has been with Westminster since 1990. She earned an undergraduate degree from Grove City College and master's degree from the University of Pittsburgh.
Roud, a Westminster graduate who joined staff in 1995, is a preschool teacher.
Contact Kang at (724) 946-6034 or email for additional information.