Creating Connections: Cool Collaborations

In Julia Heighway‘s keynote this morning, she featured some interesting collaborations. Both of these ones here are using other Internet technologies to support the videoconference.

Human Rights Club

Several high schools videoconferenced about genocide and the holocaust. The students decided they wanted to start a Human Rights Club. They created a wiki to support their work together. Check it out at The Human Condition

Hong Kong
We videoconferenced during the keynote with Chun Fung from Hong Kong who posted this project request on CILC. Roxanne’s school, Clifton Elementary, did one of the first videoconferences with his class. Isn’t the world small!?

They started with cultural exchange, dances, group games, etc

Now they are looking for longer lasting collaborations. “To obtain the full benefit of VC, it must be used as a wholistic program.” They combine VC with pen pals to establish relationships ahead of time. Videoconferencing as just a “one-off” is just a pity. It’s better to establish a long-term relationship. They did a children’s art festival to raise money for an AIDS orphanage.

Now they are working on long term programs in computer science, ICT, and math. They are doing a project with Google Sketchup. They emailed the models to each other, and then videoconferenced with each other to explain their model.

Now they are doing projects with Scratch – where the students are learning programming with icons. The students will create games, send them to each other, play and dissect each other’s games, and then videoconference with each other.

“There’s so much more to gain from a sustained collaboration vs. a quick “one-off” collaboration.” – Chun Fung

First International Math Olympiad for elementary students. There’s one for high school, but not for elementary. So now they want to focus on specific subjects instead of just cultural exchanges or practicing English. All of their projects are open and they are looking for long term partnerships.

As a sidenote, I was sitting next to Roxanne in this session and it was pretty interesting that her class did the To Kill a Mockingbird project featured, the connection with Hong Kong, and my class was the audience for the winning KC3 project featured.

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