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Skype is certainly a good

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Skype is certainly a good Helper for a teacher. It makes the lesson more vivid and interesting. Connecting with foreigners, famous people, students from a different school - it is always a great experience! I would just add one more ability of Skype - recording such calls. It is also important as it lets play the calls again and again for better understanding or for multiple usage. I had such an experience my pupils. Thanks to http://www.dvdvideosoft.com/ program we recorded calls with a native speaker and then listened to them a couple of times analyzing his speech and correcting personal mistakes.

ESL teacher of 4th and 5th graders of Chesapeake, VA

Suzie, your post has

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Suzie, your post has triggered a bunch of ideas with our ELLs and the librarian at our school. He is always looking for new innovative ideas. We have a TV station set up for daily school information and this idea of skyping will allow our school to communicate with cultures outside of Chesapeake, VA. I can not wait to see what the possibilities of using Skype are and how we can use it to broaden our knowledge of students and their cultural experiences in other nations!

Kinder through 5th grade science teacher

WOW! I use skype all of the

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WOW! I use skype all of the time in my personal life because I have family and friends all over the United State, but I never thought to use skype in the classroom. What a great resource for our students,and what a great way to make the world an availiable resource to our students.
I will have to see if my district filters will allow skype through the filters. II know with many other programs and technologies available the computers are locked up tight. But I think that it wiould be an adventure to introduce skype into my classroom.

Global Citizenship

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I appreciate the way that the use of Skype to collaborate and learn from students in other states, countries and cultures provides a natural environment for ingraining the notion of global citizenship in our youth. The growing presence of multi-national corporations and the need for nations to work collaboratively to solve world-wide issues will require a generation of learners who are able to understand and respect perspectives radically different than their own.

The easiest time to break a wall is before it is built.

Director of Youth Programming, World Affairs Council, Seattle

I love the advice to "start

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I love the advice to "start small!" We have been working with a small group of teachers here in the Seattle area to create new global classroom connections, and the first lesson we have discovered is that it really takes time to get a great connection going. For those looking for interesting programs to try, here is a resource packet that may be of interest: http://www.world-affairs.org/?attachment_id=3225
I would love to see the etiquette guide for Skype calls mentioned in the article. Is that online anywhere?

I appreciate how she teaches

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I appreciate how she teaches digital etiquette in conjunction with the lessons. Students need to understand how to operate in a digital world and do so politely and effectively. I have yet to use skype in the classroom but I do regularly have my students email experts in the field in which they studying. Skyping would allow for a whole new experience for my students.

Breaking down the walls of the classroom

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It's encouraging to see classes like that of Ms. Venosdale pushing education toward an experience that involves the world. In a period of globalization, it's imperative that our students create well-informed thoughts and opinions about the world they live in. Activities like this are peace-making mechanisms that promote global citizenship.

Have you ever heard of United Classrooms at UClass.org? They're also transforming that space, connecting classrooms around the world through their social learning network. Students in America can discuss with their peers in Uganda what they eat for lunch or who their president is. Students are adapting a healthy approach to technology, using the platform to communicate with teachers about assignments and also to share their work with classrooms elsewhere. With classrooms forming penpal relationships and engaging in the forum-like newsfeed, children are being equipped with the tools and insight they need to be successful on the global stage.

Suzie, would love to hear your thoughts on UClass' platform if you have any.

Journalist and PBL advocate

Resourceful Teachers

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William,
Thanks for sharing this example from the classroom. Your Spanish teacher offers a great example of finding a way to connect students with the world, despite barriers.

Excellent for Foreign Language Classes Also.

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Great post. When I read your posting I was reminded of how our Spanish teacher uses Skype for her classes. Since the county does not have the band-width to use Skype on our computers, she uses her Iphone. She has a friend that lives in Spain and they Skype often to help the students with conversational Spanish. The first time I saw the lesson I was amazed. The students have to prepare questions to ask the friend and then they have to reply back to her. It is one of the most innovative ways I have seen a foreign language taught. Truly I wish the technology was available when I was in school, perhaps I would have learned Spanish better.

William Knopf

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