Friday, 1 March 2013

March 1, 2013 - Getting Caught Up In The World Wide Web

Welcome to the weekend everyone,

The creation of the internet has given us the ability to bring the entire world into the classroom, yet we have not begun to tap the full global possibilities that exist as a result of this innovation.  Reading about world news, researching various cultures and environmental issues are all formats that teachers are using to incorporate globalization into the class; however there are many other  ways to turn your students into citizens of the world. 

Why not involve your students in an authentic learning project that will connect them to classrooms around the world?  i-EARN ( and is the International Education and Resource Network, which is a non-profit organization made up of over 30 000 schools in more than 130 countries.  With over 150 projects to choose from on topics ranging from science and technology to language arts and humanities, you are sure to find a theme which fits your curriculum and will engage your students.  Through an online forum teachers and students connect and collaborate with others working on the same project.   Writing an online novel, an international teddy bear exchange and holiday card creation and exchange are some of the amazing possibilities that your class can participate in with iEARN.

You’ve tried pen pals but have you ever thought about ePals?  ePals ( provides a framework for teachers to connect their classrooms to others around the world based on student age, world region or discussion themes and content.  Students are able to practice their language skills via secure online written forums and web camera applications.  This is a great opportunity for students to practice their French and English language skills (both written and oral) with students whose first language may not be our own.  In addition, classrooms can be matched up based upon the topics they wish to discuss such as children’s rights, environmental issues and even school life and common activities.  There are thousands of students waiting to connect with others around the globe and share their knowledge and experiences.  
United Classrooms (, Skype in the Classroom ( and Flat Classroom ( are only some of the many other opportunities which exist online and break down the walls of your classroom, inviting students of the world to learn with your class.  I feel that in today’s society if we are going to ever hope for peace and coexistence, we need to begin by teaching students to think globally and have compassion for others around the world who are more like them than they tend to realize.

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