Educational Outreach

Providing educators at all levels with resources and guidance for curriculum development is at the heart of our Center's mission. As part of this mission, we design and conduct teacher-training workshops and summer institutes for educators at the elementary, high school, community college and college levels.

Many of our programs and activities focus on developing better education materials and resources for teachers in Chicagoland. The Outreach office offers for loan a large range of educational materials, including books on a wide variety of topics, slide sets, curriculum units, comics and interactive teaching kits. We regularly bring experts on South Asia's cultures, histories, languages and politics to K-12 classrooms. Our staff is composed of specialists in South Asia who are able to answer questions and to help teachers and other interested individuals locate resources outside our office. We are constantly working to acquire new, quality resources and update our existing materials. For anybody interested in finding out more about the region, publicizing South Asia-related events, or gaining access to the University of Chicago's excellent resources and expertise, South Asia Outreach is a valuable point of contact.

Many classroom resources can be accessed online through the University of Chicago's Center for International Studies (click each title to expand and view links):
Summer Teacher Institutes
Educator Workshops
Speakers Bureau Presentations
CIS Educator Resources

Video Lending Library

South Asia Outreach maintains an ever-growing collection of films and audio recordings made in and about South Asia, ranging from popular Bollywood to rare historical fiction to contemporary documentaries. The film catalog is available online at http://mahimahi.uchicago.edu/drupal/southasiavideos/, and can be searched by title, foreign title, year, director, and keyword. Educators, researchers, students and other interested parties are welcome to borrow from our film library.

Arts and Culture

South Asia Outreach sponsors a variety of cultural events in Chicago, from dance shows to plays and film screenings. We host timely lectures, seminars and conferences on significant South Asian news. In partnership with musicians, scholars and community groups, we recently began an engaged sound art project among South Asian migrant communities in Chicagoland, titled Soundscapes/Devon. Our goal is to create art that educates those who experience it about South Asia.

Community Service

South Asia Outreach recently embarked on an new project to advance service opportunities for K-12 and post-secondary students in partnership with communities from Hyde Park to Hyderabad. Our model of service-learning is the idea that students can reinforce what they learn in the classroom with hands-on service experiences, and that their involvement in community life can help them apply the knowledge they build at school.

We strive to integrate service into curricula and student activities, from local citizenship tutoring and oral history projects to global human rights advocacy. We place students at Chicago-based and international non-profit organizations, advance student opportunities for international experience and raise awareness of human rights concerns across the street and across oceans. Our goal is to foster knowledge of South Asia by engaging with its communities, both homegrown and diasporic.

Please call our Outreach office, at (773) 702-8635 if you would like assistance, have an idea for collaboration, or just want to learn more about South Asia Outreach.