9 Ideas and Aspirations for Connecting Classrooms to the World
The hallmark of modern technology is connecting people. Whether that be to other people, cultures, knowledge, or experiences, the world is at our fingertips. It's no news to anyone reading this that the ability to access all this from a device that fits in our pockets has profound implications for education.
But how exactly do you connect your students and lessons to the world outside? That's a question we posed to the Schoology Champions. Here's what they had to say.
Ideas and Aspirations for Connecting Classrooms to the World
Computer/Instructional Technology Coordinator
Spartanburg District 5 Schools
We have started out the year creating “All About Me" books where my students would create a page all about them and included things such as sports teams, clothing brands, favorite sayings, etc. Then we would send this book with a class picture to other classes around the world such as Israel and Germany.
From there we would compare and contrast the differences in cultures. This would set us up to be able to complete other projects with them throughout the year. There are teachers from across the world on Twitter and Facebook that are looking to connect with other classrooms worldwide. Also, there is something on Twitter called "Global Math Challenge" that one of my teachers used to connect with other classes as well.
Chisago Lakes School District
I would like to connect with a school in England who would be interested in a collaboration that could ultimately culminate into an exchange program.
Information Technology Coordinator
Monroe Central School Corp
Monitor, monitor, monitor. Being in the tech department, I always tell my teachers that are trying this classroom connection to lay down the ground rules first and always monitor the students.
Romeo Community Schools
Find a common interest or problem. Start small and connect with some interesting teachers and share ideas.
Hartville R-II Schools
As a World History teacher, I'd like to find new and exciting ways to bring history to life. I'd like to connect with Vietnam and Korean War veterans that my students can connect with on a level deeper than what they are familiar with in their video games that glorify conflict.
Teaching and Learning Coordinator
Educational Service Unit #10
Reading the same novel? Find a classroom in another part of the world that is also reading. Share the various perspectives via a linked discussion board.
Mary Elizabeth Lubeskie
Coordinator of Online Learning & Technology Integration
Manheim Central School District
I always thought it was great when my students worked in collaborative groups, but they were stuck working with the students that were randomly put in my classes. Why not allow students from my different blocks with similar interests or topic choices to work together? With Schoology, we can allow students to work on projects together, while still in different block/periods.
Instruction Technology Coach
Lowndes County School District
We have actually done Kahoot!, a game-based educational platform, through Skpe with classrooms all over the United States. It was a ton of fun for all the kids.
Librarian/Instructional Technology Liaison
What about the idea of a geography mystery? Post tips about your location while the other group does too, and the first class to correctly guess the other's location wins!
Educational Technology Coordinator
Lexington School for the Deaf
We could use the video features in Schoology to connect to other deaf schools around the country and around the world. By sharing life experiences among one another it would ultimately build a stronger community.
Killeen Independent School District
Social Media is the quickest way to connect after you've found another global classroom. Twitter, Snapchat, Instagram, and Facebook are all amazing tools to keep in touch and share results or progress on your global project.
Instructional Technology Specialist
Schoology is such a great way to connect classes. Many elementary teachers in our district are using Schoology and there are so many awesome ways to connect students via a Course or Group that would allow them to collaborate and learn together. Big Blue Button even allows for face-to-face interaction between classrooms! Possibilities are endless.
Director of Online Learning & Academic Support
Share your passions about education (edtech, SAMR, Personalized Learning) and ask someone to work with you on implementing a project in your respective classrooms with opportunities for students to collaborate.
Do you have ideas for breaking down the classroom walls? Share them in the comments below.