Teachers' Curriculum Development Program: Jordan 2020

photo from Petra, Jordan

A 29-Day Educators' Travel Seminar through Jordan

May 27-June 27, 2022

(a Fulbright-Hays Group Project Abroad for educators organized by the University of Arizona Center for Middle Eastern Studies)


Description of the Program:     

“Continuity and Change in Jordan: Social and Environmental Transformations” is a FUNDED curriculum development program for K-12 and community college educators in the fields of Social Studies, Humanities, English/Language Arts, Foreign Language, and the Fine Arts. The program will focus on Jordan’s complexity as an ancient land of native peoples and as a modern, developing society.

The Jordan program, open to educators nationwide who are of Native American background, who work with Native American students, or who teach about indigenous U.S. peoples (i.e. U.S. History, Literature), is especially designed to incorporate indigenous and tribal issues in teaching about the Middle East, providing a lens that will benefit all U.S. student populations. Some of the topics the program will explore are: the relations of tribes (Bedouin) to the government, women's roles within a traditional society, environmental issues (arid lands), shared waters, and populations separated by borders.   

The travel seminar will be co-led by Project Director (Dr. Lisa Adeli, CMES Director of Educational Outreach with a PhD in History and long experience as a high school teacher) and Scholar-Escort Renee Spellman (PhD candidate in Middle Eastern and North African Studies focusing on the Arabic language, with ten years of experience living in the West Bank). To learn more about Renee, CLICK HERE. To learn more about Lisa and the outreach work of CMES, CLICK HERE.

The program is an intensive travel and study experience. CLICK HERE for a tentative itinerary. Be sure to look at the itinerary to see if this is something you want to do! Participants will travel throughout the country, visit cultural sites and museums, hear lectures by distinguished presenters, participate in Arabic language learning sessions, attend performances and cultural events, and hone their curriculum development ideas in group pedagogy sessions. Note: The program involves a great deal of traveling and a lot of walking (sometimes outside in hot weather).     

Program Requirements:

Selected particiants are required to:
  • Participate in an online pre-travel program that includes readings, recorded talks, travel orientation and 20 hours of Arabic instruction (including some Zoom meetings).
  • Participate fully in the travel abroad seminar. Important note: Fulbright-Hays rules do NOT allow family members or friends to accompany or join us for any part of the program (though participants may arrange their airline ticket to meet them AFTER the conclusion of the program).
  • Following the abroad travel, participants must:(1) create a curriculum unit or project written in such a way that other educators at the same teaching level/content area can use it,(2) create a short Arabic language module or integrate material about the Arabic language into the curriculum, and (3) give at least one talk at an educators' conference or community group (such as a public library, community service group meeting, or house of worship).                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                          Wadi Rum, Jordan

Who Is Eligible to Apply:

You are eligible to apply if you fulfill ALL of the following requirements:

  • You are a FULL-TIME K-12 teacher or administrator in a public, private, or charter school OR a full-time community college educator.
  • You are of Native American background, work with or teach Native American students, OR teach about Native American issues.
  • You are available to travel from May 31-June 29, 2020.
  • You teach Social Studies/Social Sciences, English/Language Arts, Foreign Language (especially Spanish or Arabic), or Fine Arts. 
  • You teach in the U.S. and have U.S. citizenship or permanent residency.
  • You demonstrate that you can integrate what you learn into your curriculum.
  • You are committed to professional development and sharing what you learn with others.

If you have any questions about your eligibility, please contact Julie Ellison-Speight - jellison@arizona.edu - before applying. 

Jerash, Jordan

Logistics and Other Notes about the Program:

Expenses Covered by Grant Funding:

  • Airline reservations from a hub city near the participant's home. (We will all fly together on May 29, but participants will have the option of making the return reservation at a later date, in case they want to travel to other countries in the Middle East - at their own expense - after the conclusion of the program.)
  • Double-occupancy hotel accommodations at safe, air-conditioned, comfortable, hotels.
  • All breakfasts and and dinners.
  • Transportation - mostly by private mini-bus - in-country.
  • Local guides and trip leaders.
  • All agency fees.
  • Honoraria for speakers. 
  • Entrance fees to museums, sites, and performances.
  • Some funding toward the purchase of classroom/curriculum development materials.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                        A Roman theater in Jordan

Expenses Covered by Selected Participants:

  • $750 cost share - due by Feb. 15, 2020. Note: This is refundable only if a participant withdraws in time to find a qualified replacement (There will be an alternate list.) and if program expenses haven't already been incurred.
  • Expenses traveling to a hub airport near participants' home
  • The cost of lunches each day
  • Personal expenses/purchases while traveling
  • The cost of obtaining a passport (for those who don't already have one)
  • The price of short-term travel insurance    

Notes on the Organization of the Program:

  • This program seeks a diverse pool of applicants. People of all racial/ethnic backgrounds, religions, and genders are invited to participate. After selection for the program, be sure to notify the project directors in advance of any special needs (dietary, housing, etc.).   
  • Because of Fulbright-Hays rules and the logistics/demands of the program, family members can NOT be included in the program. If participants want to travel with their family, they can arrange to meet them in Amman or elsewhere at the conclusion of the program. (Participants will all fly out to Jordan together but will have the option of choosing a later return date.)   

THE APPLICATION DEADLINE is Sunday, December 1, 2019. For the application instructions, click here. For the Application cover page, click here.

For more information, contact Julie Ellison-Speight - jellison@arizona.edu or 520-621-7904




PDF icon Renee's bio.pdf166.18 KB
PDF icon Schedule.pdf238.35 KB
File Application cover page.docx63.75 KB
PDF icon Application instructions.pdf224.07 KB

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