A common theme across the conferences/readings that I have attended lately, stress on the concept of collaboration, not just within your classroom but also across classrooms in the country and around the world. There are several reasons for world wide collaboration, particularly with the flattening of the world and the globalisation of businesses. Children need to understand the value of collaboration early on along with understanding various cultural backgrounds. You can collaborate in real time or otherwise.
Following are ideas for projects:
Remember that you might need to fill out acceptable user policy for kids; don't use names
1. Learning about how weather is the same in different parts of the world at the same time - 1st grade.
No pictures with students. But different schools took pictures about the weather and put them up on a website. All participating schools took the same pictures.
2. Another one for primary kids would be tooth tally. Tooth Tally
3. Grocery lists and prices shared globally. Landmark Projects
4. Next level: Our class buddies. kind of Flat Stanley.
Students keep a journal for the buddy. Kind of just like Flat Stanley. Share pictures between the classrooms. This fits in with narratives. Collaborative Projects
5. Flat Stanley Online: There is also a flat stanley application for the iPod/iPad.
6. Teachers Net: Can be used to look up a classroom buddy.
7. Penpals: The teacher hooked up with another 3rd grade class in the UK.
Dedicated an email address for the penpal process. Teacher’s email address used for the project. The teacher would approve all inbound/outbound emails. Use Google forms to setup things like - what do you do after school? What do you eat for breakfast/dinner, etc.? Use the data for compare/contrast.
8. Teachers Corner
9. Monster project: Cooperative Learning projects:
Draw an image; describe the image; upload the description; kids in Australia see the description; they draw the image based upon the description; the two images are then compared;
10. Read Across America: You could skype at the same time with other classrooms and read Dr. Seuss’ books.
11. Math project: Measure the classroom dimensions in customary and metric forms.
12. Taking IT Global
13. Global Education You can collaborate on Pie day for instance.
14. iLearn Collaboration Center
15. Rock Our World: Connect through music.
16. Science Across the World: This one sets up Science projects and observations
17. Flat Classroom Project
18. Radiowaves: Multimedia projects to share
Tools to use:
1. Wallwisher: Reading a book with another class. During SSR time/reader’s workshop time, kids can write their responses
4. Webspiration: Inspiration and is free. You can draw character maps/writing webs and share with other classrooms.
5. BoardHost: Free. Response to literature. Read with different schools and put up responses. Only teacher email used.
6. Voicethread : Free for educators
7. Animoto: Free for educators. Example of project: CA students did a video for Ohlone Indians and the East coast for Iriquois and you can then compare and contrast/observe the different ways.
8. Skype for classrooms: Just for schools. You can skype to classrooms in different states.
10. 30 Interesting Ways to use twitter in the classroom
A recent article on ways of using Skype in the classroom: 50 Awesome ways of using Skype in the Classroom