Posts Tagged With: Education

Saraswati, Goddess of Knowledge


My wife and I are educators. As such, we have both come to have a fondness for Saraswati, the Hindu goddess of knowledge, education, learning, and the arts. Saraswati is the consort of Brahma, and her knowledge brings order out of chaos, a metaphor I appreciate.

Although often depicted riding a swan, playing a musical instrument called a vena, and carrying a book, this early sculpture (above) is one of my favorite representations of her. It can be seen at the City Museum in Jaipur, Rajasthan.

(Raja Ravi Varma, Goddess Saraswathi, oil on canvas, 1896. Maharaja Fateh Singh Museum, Lakshmi Vilas Palace, Vadodara, Gujarat. Courtesy Wikimedia Commons)

Categories: Religion | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

Teacher Trek Awards Announced 5/16!

Courtesy Trey Ratcliff,

Courtesy Trey Ratcliff,

The voting phase of the Hilton HHonors Teacher Trek  travel grant competition is over.  Fifteen lucky teachers with the most public votes will have their proposals funded.  These treks will be the trip-of-a-lifetime for each teacher involved. World travel  can broaden views, break down barriers, and enrich classrooms through firsthand experiences. I am so appreciative of Hilton HHonors for supporting education generally, and cultural education specifically.  Their financial support makes these enriching experiences possible.

I am also so VERY thankful of everyone who took the time to register and to vote on my behalf. Regardless of the outcome, it has been a wonderful experience.  Equally thrilling is that being selected as a finalist by the Institute of International Education has secured a $2,500 cash award to enrich students’ experiences in my department.

Now the hard part… waiting until awards are announced May 16th!   The announcement will be made at

Categories: Proposal | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Last Day to Vote!


Help me share a case study of #India with USA students! Last day to VOTE SCOTTW to win #HHTeacherTreks You could win $250 #HiltonHHonors gift card for voting!

(Photo courtesy Paulrudd)

Categories: Proposal | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Vote to Enrich my Classroom!

Courtesy Ranvieg, Wikimedia Commons.

Courtesy Ranvieg, Wikimedia Commons.

I am a finalist for the 2013  @HHTeacherTreks travel grant and I NEED YOUR VOTE!  Fifteen teachers will have their proposals for world travel funded to enrich their classroom by @HiltonHHonors

Please support of my proposal: a case study of India to share with students and colleagues for a Human Geography course. Voting ends 4/30 and some voters will win $250 Hilton Gift Cards,

Please scroll down and vote for ScottW  here!


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Vote for my Proposal!


(Image courtesy of Trey Ratcliff at

I am passionate about human culture — not for the sake political correctness, but for the sake of understanding the human condition.  Selected by the Institute of International Education, I am a finalist for the 2013 Hilton HHonors Teacher Trek travel grant.

The winners will be selected by public vote and I would appreciate your support of my proposal: a case study of India to share with students and colleagues for a Human Geography course. Voters can vote once per day until 4/30 and some voters will win $250 Hilton Gift Cards.   Please vote for Scott W here!

My proposal is published on the @HHTeacherTreks site at the link above, but I will repost it here.

My Proposal

What can a trek through India teach tomorrow’s travelers about culture?  Help launch a new course & broaden students’ worldview via a case study of India!

This teacher wants to trek through India; to explore India’s amazing places, to grasp a sense of its scale, to perceive its patterns of varied culture, its regional diversity, and understand its place in our intertwined global community.  An adventure such as this would better enable me to share with my students— tomorrow’s travelers and future citizens of the world— what the human condition is and how we each fit into the global community.

How might that happen?  I have a unique opportunity, a chance to impact students across my district.  Teachers at each of my district’s three high schools will be teaching a Human Geography course for the first time in the 2013-14 school year.  A Teacher Trek to India would enable me to produce and share a case study of India seen through the lens of Human Geography—a discipline that provides a detailed examination of culture in relation to place. My colleagues and their students from across our school district would benefit.  This Teacher Trek would enable me to document and share observations and illustrations of concepts integral to the Human Geography course. Doing so would bear the intimacy of firsthand experience rather than the sterile nature of textbooks.

Where would I go and what would I do? New Delhi would serve as the main hub for an exploration of diverse northern India.  A Hilton property such as Eros would provide a home base for a close examination of New Delhi’s urban landscape, its people, and rich history. Sites to explore in and around New Delhi, such the Red Fort, the National Museum, the President’s Estate, the Lotus Bahai Temple, Purana Qila Old Fort, and the India Gate, each provide alluring opportunities for cultural and historic explorations.

New Delhi is also centrally located to provide easy access to diverse neighboring regions. Daytreks or short overnight trips to neighboring states would broaden my view of India.  A short train ride to Uttar Predesh would reveal Agra and one of the seven wonders of the modern world – the Taj Mahal.  An equally short trip to the southwest of New Delhi would unveil the Rajasthan, “the Land of Kings” and Jaipur, famous for its Pink City and Jain temples. There I would ride an elephant to the Amber Fort, and survey its pastoral land.  To New Delhi’s Northeast are the foothills of the Himalayas that give birth to the mighty Ganges. There I would explore its regional distinctions, its rural agricultural lands, and the history of the people who rebelled from English colonization.

The opportunity to trek through northern India would have an enormous positive impact. This place-based study of the diverse landscape and people of northern India would broaden my world view.   It would improve the educational experiences of students across my district, and enrich my professional experiences in a manner not otherwise possible.


ScottLike it? Please scroll down and vote for Scott W here!

I genuinely appreciate your support!

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