I have another session of the Planning Interactive Curriculum Connections class starting this week. We have 9 participants and two are from Guatemala! (We could squeeze you in if you register today or tomorrow.)
In the first week, the participants read some articles and share the benefits of videoconferencing. One of the participants, Kelly Hawn, is a teacher at F. C. Reed Middle School in Bridgman, MI, here in my service area. This year, Kelly has done Eco-Conversations and been an audience for a KC3 contestant class in Alberta. Here is her list of benefits of videoconferencing:
- Students are more engaged in learning from others than from textbooks.
- Students like presenting to other schools and they practiced their presentations ahead of time, therefore reinforcing their content. They took their presentation much more seriously because they were presenting to someone they didn’t know. It’s so much better than presenting to their own classmates. They put in more time and did a much better job than they would have if they just presented to their classmates.
- Students were allowed time to ask questions about the other school (weather, class schedules, favorite things to do, what music they like, class size, school uniforms, and so much more).
- The students became pen pals with students from other countries and states and we also exchanged gifts and pictures.
- The students want to reunite and show and learn more. Currently my Social Studies class is studying Europe and they want to do another VC with England to ask them about some things we are learning in our textbook.
- The students love the fact that they can see and interact with another school with immediate feedback. The Alberta school was amazed at how big our school was compared to theirs (and our school is small). Students in England wore uniforms and was an all girls schools.
How about you? What do you see as the benefit to videoconferencing in schools?