"I have always imagined that Paradise will be some kind of library." ~ Jorge Luis Borges

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Skyping, students and other spectaular stuff

Alliteration being one...spectacular stuff... that is...

Picture Book Month has started off spectacularly (there's one)!  The posters are up, the teachers are on board, the students are excited and everyone is reading.  Spectacular indeed!

What of "students" and "Skyping?"  (There's two and three!)  My 3rd and 4th grade students learned about Picture Book Month from students in another state (one in the Midwest, known as a transportation hub...) via Skype.  It was thrilling (and I don't use that word often) to watch the students teach and learn together, with very little adult intervention.  My students will now go out into our school community as ambassadors of Picture Book Month and teach the students in the other classrooms (and they'll tell two friends, and they'll tell two friends and so on and so on and so on...). 

There were other benefits to this Skype conversation!  The students at each school predicted how many picture books they could read, which was a wonderful site in and of itself as they set to work calculating the number of students and how many books each might read.  They also spent a few moments sharing some of their favorite picture books, one of which got a round of applause from the receiving school! 

I am drawn to collaboration as a learning tool and so was pleased that the students had the opportunity to share a bit about their respective schools as well.  We have some more work to do before these students can become a cohesive learning community, for collaborative bridge building takes time, but they laid quite a nice foundation this week. Bravo!

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