A hush falls over the classroom as the time approaches. The teacher turns off the lights and powers on the projector. The classroom is strangely silent, but there is a palpable excitement in the air as students bounce slightly in their seats in anticipation. Then comes the familiar ringing sound and a friendly face fills the screen.
With the new year now fully underway, some DDSB teachers are already bringing the world to their students by tapping into the amazing opportunities available through Skype in the classroom. Our world is becoming increasingly more interconnected and this is a fantastic way to help prepare students for the global culture that they will face when they graduate.
By using Skype in the classroom, your students can journey to far off lands that they would never be able to visit in real life, meet and collaborate with other students from around the globe, and consult with authors, scientists, and other experts to learn from them as well as receive feedback on projects. This helps students to develop a knowledge and understanding of other cultures, and build collaboration skills and empathy.
The grade 3 classes at Uxbridge PS recently had the amazing opportunity to Skype with an elephant sanctuary in Tennessee. They learned not only about the animals but also about their plight as an endangered species today and the ongoing issues that they face. Students were engaged and invested in their learning, as it was a live, interactive experience where they were encouraged to ask deep questions and think critically.
Their teacher found the experience through the Microsoft Educators’ Community, where there are many exciting virtual field trips, collaborative projects, and guest speakers to pick from. Imagine your students having the chance to speak with an author, journey underwater to the Aquarius research station, or share their love of coding with a computer scientist. Bring the world into your classroom and share unique, authentic learning experiences with your students throughout the year.