I saw this call for schools and jumped in. Sylvia, over at her Langwitches blog, is hoping to connect her classroom with 80 other schools through the use of Skype, the online phone/video platform. She has put some great thought into the project and now she is searching for schools to participate. The Skype calls can be fairly short but it seems like a great way for schools to connect and for teachers to try out Skype. (If you need to get a sense of what Skype is, a good starting point is Sue Water’s post about skyping with other classrooms)
Sylvia has started up an Around the World With 80 Schools Google Map to visually show the locations of the school. I just added the mascot and picture of our school (Gail P., our intrepid kindergarten teacher, realized that the two of us had both signed up — our paths are now crossing left and right, in hallways and in virtual spaces).
As of a few days ago, these countries were represented:
I like, too, how Sylvia has laid out the rationale for the concept.
- cultural awareness
- global awareness
- global collaboration
- technology integration
- social studies
National Educational Technology Standards (NETS•S)
2. Communication and Collaboration
Students use digital media and environments to communicate and work collaboratively, including at a distance, to support individual learning and contribute to the learning of others. Students:
a. interact, collaborate, and publish with peers, experts, or others employing a variety of digital environments and media.
b. communicate information and ideas effectively to multiple audiences using a variety of media and formats.
c. develop cultural understanding and global awareness by engaging with learners of other cultures.
d. contribute to project teams to produce original works or solve problems.
There is still time for classrooms kindergarten through sixth grade to sign up. The easiest way is to use the Google Form that Sylvia has set up. Once you have done that, she will contact you with the Google Spreadsheet and the Google Map, and you are on your way.
Come on in and Skype and connect.
Peace (in connections),