Sharing Our Experience

Thurgood Marshall Elementary School reads What Does It Mean To Be Global?

Thurgood Marshall Elementary School wrote to What Does It Mean To Be Global? author Rana DiOrio to share the adventure that our book helped them embark upon— one that they never could have predicted! They have graciously allowed us to share the letter and pictures with you:

Dear Ms. DiOrio,

We are writing to share how your book, “What Does it Mean To Be Global?,” sparked an incredible journey for our students that touched the lives of their peers in a small village in Africa.

Asbury Park School District’s new mission statement is to ensure that students “possess the skills and character to succeed in a diverse, evolving global society.”

Since this mission statement is recited each day, our first goal was to bring meaning to these “big” words for our students.

So, to help us with this task, we started the year off with your book!

They loved the humor and illustrations. It was truly the springboard for the adventure that followed…

Anxious for our students to have authentic learning experiences, we joined the Epals online community and met Livingstone Kegode, Director of HIP Academy in Kenya, Africa (

Our students developed a friendship with HIP Academy students. Through correspondence, (photos and emails), they were shocked to see the conditions at this school in Africa. They quickly expressed their desire to help. With our assistance (baking 600 cookies), the students organized a fundraiser to purchase and ship school supplies to assist HIP Academy students.


Our students were unknowingly responsible for introducing their peers in Kenya to the sport of baseball!


Afterward, a Skype call was arranged so we could meet each other.


At the start of this school year, we were asked to present our Skype experience to district teachers.

“What Does it Mean To Be Global?,” was front and center!


We hope you can see how your book helped create something special!

Thank You,



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