Link-up with Boston

Today in ICT we had a link up with students and Mrs Leo from Jackson, Boston USA. In the virtual classroom known as blackboard collaboration, we also had a student teacher from Canada and two people from Japan. Hawkesdale College is a small country town but with the worldwide web we are still able to access and participate in global activities. Today was an example of this.

My ICT class all had to talk about a photo which thy choose. I talked about Hawkesdale, the Hawkesdale Hotel and the Hawkesdale fire truck. At first I was a bit nervous but once I started talking I was alright. It’s a weird feeling knowing that students and teachers in three different countries plus my own peers were listening to what I had to say. As I was talking students would write questions in the chat and I would try to answer them if I could.

I enjoy doing link-ups like this one as it is a easy way to learn about other cultures. They say there is no better way to learn than to learn from your peers. Using a virtual classroom and talking to students in other countries is more interesting and more valuable then any textbook.

The dots and faces on the worldmap picture below shows where students in the virtual classroom were from.

8 thoughts on “Link-up with Boston

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  2. Georgia,
    I loved reading about your experience in the Virtual classroom. Technology is wonderful when it can bring people together so that they learn about their differences and similarities. As a teacher, I spoke at my first Elluminate session myself only last week, and like you felt a bit nervous. It was worth it though as I connected with people and that is such a wonderful learning experience.

    I am curious to know, what did you learn from the other students?

    Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

    Celia Coffa
    Melbourne

  3. Hi Georgia,
    I am always so excited when I recognize a familiar name in the virtual classroom. I was happy to see you log in on Thursday night/ Friday. This was my students very first experience in the Blackboard Collaborate room. When they heard the sound ‘recording started’ it sounded SO official. What a neat experience to be able to sit in a virtual classroom and draw with students thousands of miles away! In 2001, I followed a sailor as he sailed from New York City to Melbourne, AU. I remember that it took him what seemed like FOREVER to get there. I remember that he was so happy to arrive in Port Philips Bay. When he got there, an aunt of one of my students (who coincidentally lived in Melbourne!) drove her bike down to greet him. She took lots of photos and told us all about the arrival. We sent a congratulations banner with one of the staff who had gone over to greet him. It was SO exciting to think that our banner was way over in Australia. http://www.sitesalive.com/ocl/private/01f/framesets/oc_index.html I knew one high school teacher in Melbourne who was following the voyage, but I wasn’t familiar with any other teachers and was very curious to know what it was like to go to school and live in Australia. Thanks to the advances in technology over the past decade, we are now able to actually talk with and work with students in this continent that I was so curious about. It is incredible to think that we can meet in real time. 11 years ago, I was just thrilled to receive an email from Australia. The cost of a phone call was very expensive so we rarely ever called.
    You are living in a very exciting time and I think that the world will be much smaller for you as a result of not only the advances in telecommunications but also your interest in working and connecting with others. I know my students enjoyed hearing about Hawkesdale and noted similarities and differences in our schools and communities. We agreed that having these cross-cultural conferences is a lot of fun and we learned alot from you. Thank you for making this possible!

  4. Thank-you Sebastian for your kind words. It is a passion of mine to work with others from around the globe.
    Thanks

  5. Hi Celia,
    Thank-you for your comment. Elluminate and Blackboard Collaborate are such wonderful tools which makes it easy to communicate, teach and learn with others. When the students from Jackson school, Boston talked to us Australians they talked about their school. I learnt that they learn Spanish and Latin at their school. They have a smartboard in every room the same as my school, Hawkesdale College. Their school starts at Kindergarten and goes to 6th grade. It’s hard to believe that Hawkesdale College, a small rural school in Australia would have so many similarites to a school in Boston, USA.
    Thanks Georgia

  6. Hi Lorraine,
    Thank-you for your kinds words. One thing that I noticed during the two link-ups with your school was the similarities. It is hard to believe a small rural school in Australia would have so many things in common with a school in Boston, USA. When my teacher told me Lorraine Leo was linking up with us with her students my automatic reaction was ‘I know her!’ Australia is a great place to live and it’s great to share my thoughts and tell others what a wonderful place it is as well as learning about another place, another country, another continent.
    Thank-you for giving up your time and listening to my classmate and I speaking. I enjoyed it thoroughly and look forward to any other link-ups with you and/or your students in the future.
    Thank Georgia

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