Kid World Citizen's Inspiring Speech at Global Education Conference

December 10, 2013

Mozart Dee, kid world citizen's inspiring speech on Global Education

Mozart Dee was the youngest speaker at the 4th annual Global Education Conference, a week-long online event bringing together educators and innovators from around the world with over 13,000 participants, so she was extremely honored to be selected to present.

Thanks to all who joined us on the "live" world wide conference on November 21st and here is a Youtube video of her inspiring speech ( a longer version with intro and Q&A can be found on the GEC site called,"13 year old Trilingual Pioneer in Global Education - World as Classroom- LITERALLY"):

As a global citizen"world schooler" and travel pioneer (having spent the last 8 years ,all of her primary school years, traveling the world and becoming fluent in Mandarin and Spanish), she has a unique perspective and passion to make a difference.


Hi my name is Mozart!  I am really thrilled and honored  to be here to talk about my experience of growing up as a trilingual global citizen with a unique educational path.

 I hope it can inspire others as I wish every child could travel the world. Thanks so much for coming and I send you all some warm tropical sunshine from Malaysia where it is 9am this Friday morning.

stunning Sydney


One of the many perks of being a global kid is celebrating cool birthdays abroad and I just had my 13th in Sydney with a paleo cake and learned to play and bought a didgeridoo. It was my 9th country and 4th continent for celebrating a birthday.  Lucky me!

John Holt said:
 "There is no difference between living and learning… it is impossible and misleading and harmful to think of them as being separate.” .......

and the way my parents raised me, I think it is true as we are life-long-learners who seem to be constantly learning even when we are playing or celebrating.

Mozart traveling the world


As my Mom says, " Family travel is often about doing ordinary things in extraordinary places" or Radmacher who says "I am not the same having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world"  or Bolaño who says "Every hundred feet the world changes."

 I think it is REALLY hard to travel and NOT learn. As great as tech is, I think it is difficult to get a truly global education without actual physical world travel and we think it needs to start young. 

Certainly participating in cultural festivals at home, learning languages, studying cultures via books, domestic travel etc, helps and is a good start as that is how my parents started with me at birth.  

Mozart doing a service project with kids in Harlem


One year, we took some disadvantaged school kids from Harlem and the New York City area with us virtually through volunteering with Reach The World  and have collaborated with many teachers and homeschool groups which can help kids who don't have travel opportunities. We find that children seem to really relate to another kid traveling, so I am open to those kinds of opportunities to give back and I am writing a series of kid's books for every country we've traveled to.

Mozart at 5 months old standing anc clapping to the music


I have always been on my own track so I walked and bilingually talked starting at 6 months old, began violin at 23 months, reading at 2 years old, and piano at three, thus finding ways to educate me was a bit of challenge for my parents. My preschool teacher tested me as reading at a third grade level at 3 and our Pediatrician advised my parents to go by my development and not my age, so I skipped ahead 3 grades in both a private and public school.

Little Mozart reading Harry Potter in the UK at Cambridge U

BUT that wasn't quite right either, so my parents decided to homeschool. Then they thought, if they were going to homeschool they might as well do it around the world, so they decided to take the huge risk of  retiring early, selling everything to educate me and have more time together. That was 2005, I was 5 and we have been traveling ever since. 

Little Mozart's passport photo


Some have called me the most well-traveled kid in the world because I have been traveling 8 years straight,  (my entire primary years!)   to 45 countries on 5 continents, as well as my fluent languages and deep cultural immersion. I have seen and experienced much of our planet, circling it more than once.

  I likely have the record for the most UNESCO World Heritage sites on 5 continents, world-class museums and ancient ruins seen by a kid, I've been in local schools in 4 countries in several languages and am probably the only kid since Wolfgang Armadeus Mozart to do extensive world travel with a violin and piano...BUT it has all just seemed like normal life to me.

Mozart - most well traveled kid after climbing to the Tiger's Nest in Bhutan

I think I am just now beginning to understand just how lucky I have been and I so appreciate all that I have seen, my beautful friends around the world and so much time with my family.

I am an only child and very social, so my parents have set up a slow international travel method that has us returning to places often with many "homes" around the world, so I keep long term friendships in several languages.We travel and live well on a budget of just $23 a day per person.

Well traveled Mozart with Chinese friend in Xi'an, China

We love the quote by Hunt that says "Traveling in the company of those we love is home in motion" because it suits our life view perfectly.


Sir Ken Robinson says, “We have sold ourselves into a fast food model of education, and it's impoverishing our spirit and our energies as much as fast food is depleting our physical bodies.”  and I agree!  I  think it is time for a CHANGE and it is ON THE WAY!!

Yes, ordinary families can travel the world on a low budget!


One sign is brand new expensive schools (which cost over  80, 000 dollars a year!) which are allowing wealthy people to get a more global education. This is similar to how the privileged aristocrats in the past did it with their "Grand Tour's" of Europe for months or years in search of culture, education and the roots of Western Civilization.

But today's ruling-class, educational trends are MOBILE schools that encourage travel IMMERSION and feature Spanish and Mandarin learning as a priority.

SOULTRAVELERS3 FAMILY IN BARCELONA - ordinary family traveling the world non-stop

BUT you don't have to be rich to see the world and get a first class, immersion global education. You can be a very ordinary family like mine and this "location -independent" lifestyle is a growing trend.


*Studies show 50 million workers both COULD and WANT to telework.

 *Regular telecommuting grew by 79.7% between 2005 and 2012.  

* 3.3 million people from the US, (not including the self-employed or unpaid volunteers) consider home their primary place of work.

 And as the saying goes, IF YOU CAN WORK AT HOME, YOU CAN WORK IN ROME, .....or ANY where else!

family travel lifestyle -digital nomad - laptop working in Portugal

There is a tsunami of change coming as people learn that thanks to emerging tech, we can all work, school and live ANY where .....AND it is a greener choice which makes me so happy.


I have long had a passion for green and sustainable living, perhaps from all that I have seen in my travels. At 10 I won an English elocution contest at my 1000 kid Chinese school for a speech I wrote and gave about how we can all work together to create a happier, green planet. I will leave that video at the end.

Because we live a minimal lifestyle of few things and travel the world with just carry-on luggage, we live a very low carbon footprint lifestyle. Telecommuters, known as Digital Nomads,  are the most agile, green, and versatile type of employee, so not only is it more fun, but it solves many of our planet's problems when we are living in a way that saves resources like gas and cars to drive to work in heavy traffic.  I don't think the current wired generation of Millennials and my generation wants a life like Goodman's famous quote:

“Normal is getting dressed in clothes that you buy for work and driving through traffic in a car that you are still paying for - in order to get to the job you need to pay for the clothes and the car, and the house you leave vacant all day so you can afford to live in it.”


There really is a better way .....and I am living it!


More and more people are heading in this direction from Gen Y'ers to  families and baby boomers.

Teachers actually have it easier than most to do this  slow travel lifestyle due to:

* summers off

* sabbaticals

*distant learning and teaching

* international schools

*teaching English around the world



I am not only a student,  I am also a teacher and entrepreneur  (since I was 12), so I am already doing this as we roam the world. I teach students on 3 continents in Mandarin, Spanish and English( from 4 to 30 years old,  including a geophysicist!) in person and online via Skype. I love it and make good money for a kid my age!



We travel the world much cheaper than we ever lived at home.  If you stay at a 5 star resort, travel CAN be expensive but in many places around the world, one can live well on very little.

Most people dream about traveling around the world, yet few realize how easy and inexpensive it can be for almost anyone. We know a family on a limited income with 8 kids and a grandpa who did it, a single mom with 5 young adopted kids doing it,  families with severe health challenges who do it and more. If there is a will, there is always a way.


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So beautiful! I can only imagine how proud you must be :-)

Jeanne @soultravelers3

Thanks so much Maggie! I am so pleased to hear that you liked it and we are indeed proud!

The second part is coming soon!

Erik Dvan

Very nice, you're making the world better, togheter we can do this, thank you !

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