Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Long Term Global Connections- Seeking partners for a new way to teach and learn

Below I have reposted in full a recent post from Clarence Fisher at Remote Access. We are beginning to set in motion plans for next year and this is his appeal to find others who might want to make this commitment. It will require tenacity and perseverance but the rewards should be very great for students and teachers alike....Clarence has already done some exciting global projects and now is looking at a more all embracing model that will push us toward school 2.0...
Think of it as team teaching or co-teaching a class without walls...

As I've watched this year turn into one of successful international projects blossoming across various spaces and continents, I find that I'm still concerned about the "specialness" of these connections. They are carefully orchestrated events working on strict timelines initiated by teachers. While I am a strong advocate of carefully crafting a classroom environment, I think its time to move beyond this. We have proved we can connect kids using the tools that are available to us. We have proved that kids can be successful working in international collaborative groups.

With this in mind, I am beginning to plan for next year. I'd like next school year to be different. I'd like next year to be a year of becoming a truly globalized classroom. I'm looking for a few partners (3? 4?) who are interested in working together long - term. While I've had the privilege of meeting a lot of wonderful teachers who I could simply email and ask, in the spirit of openness and network connectiveness, I'm opening up instead.

The best matches would be classrooms that:

- are around the same grade level as mine (13 - 14 year olds)

- are self - contained or are a group of students that are taught by small group of teachers

- have access at school to tools like wikis, Skype, blogs, Thinkfree, YackPack, etc.

- have good enough Internet access to be be able to work with technology like VOIP and exchange videos, photos, etc.

- are able to get access to the Internet on a daily basis

While I'm not looking for our classrooms to be connected all day, I would like to be connected on a daily basis (might be through blogs, wiki research, a VOIP call, etc.) on at least one ongoing unit (we would work on a math unit together for awhile, switch to a novel study, then move into a group photography project)

I'm looking for a small group of people looking to change what classrooms can be. I want to create a network of people looking to have "thin - walled" classrooms.

If anyone could re - post this call to spread it far and wide I'd be forever grateful. Email me (glassbeed@gmail.com),

or leave a comment here

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