Yesterday my students had the wonderful experience of Skyping with Jody Amri’s class Oregon. This was the first time Skyping for my students, and they LOVED it!
Before our Skype chat, Jody and I planned an agenda of what we would like to cover in the 30-minute meeting. We included introductions, comparing/contrasting the time and weather at both of our schools, discussing the subtopics, and sharing how we would celebrate Halloween (our Skype chat was on October 31st!). I shared the agenda with my students before our meeting and taped it next to our computer so we could reference it during our chat.
For my students, there were two major benefits of the Skype chat. One was having the opportunity to discuss the AWL essential questions and subtopic information with their peers. I only have three students participating in the project, and they are all in different subgroups, so here at school they don’t have other peers to consult when they’re stuck for fresh ideas. It was wonderful for them to connect with their subgroup peers and share what they’ve found so far! Also, we’re VERY excited that Mrs. Amri invited us to call her on Skype at any time when my students would like to connect!
The second major benefit of the Skype chat for my students was the experience of Skyping in itself. Mrs. Amri did a beautiful thing by telling my students that she noticed they became much more comfortable and natural as our conversation went on. At first they were shy, giving short answers or mere nods, but as our conversation came to a close, they were speaking normally with their friends in Oregon. It was great to see!
I appreciate so much that Jody shared her experience with my students and with me. I learned a lot from her about how to facilitate a Skype chat, and she and her students were very encouraging with my kiddos.
Thank you Jody, Mrs. Amri’s class, and Flat Classroom for providing this experience!
Blue Ridge Elementary
New Milford, PA