#globalclassroom Chat – Building a Virtual PLN: What, Why, How?

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               Virtual PLN connections coming together in person! Hosted by @globaledcon and @VIFLearn, the Global Educators Brunch at #ISTE2015 brought together (for the first time ever) many of the #globalclassroom project leaders and organisers from Australia, Canada, the United Kingdom, and the United States.

Connecting. Collaborating. Professional growth. Constant learning. New ideas. A network of like-minded, online educators who enable all of the above while inspiring, encouraging, and supporting each other in this ever-changing field of education. These are just some of the words and phrases that come to mind when one thinks of a virtual Personal Learning Network (PLN).

Here at The Global Classroom Project and VIF, we have all seen the value in starting and building strong PLNs. We have connected with each other from far across the globe, shared wonderful ideas, collaborated on projects, and brought classrooms of students together that otherwise may not have had the opportunity to meet and learn from one another. We have reaped the benefits and we know that many of you have as well!

In honor of these benefits and of PLNs everywhere, this month’s chat is dedicated to exploring all of the ins and outs – the how and the why, challenges and successes, and recommendations about some additions we might all want to add to our networks.

Check out the questions and the chat times below. We hope you will add at least one of these to your Saturday calendar so you can share your experience and expertise with the rest of us!

Questions

Q1: Let’s start from the beginning! Why did you start building a virtual PLN? How has having a PLN impacted your work as an educator? #globalclassroom

Q2: How did you go about starting and building up your virtual PLN? #globalclassroom

Q3: What challenges have you (or colleagues) faced when building & growing your virtual PLN? Did you overcome them? How? #globalclassroom

Q4: Let’s wrap up with recommendations! What tools or people have influenced the development of your PLN? Why?  #globalclassroom

Times

Based on past experience with the #globalclassroom chats, we are trialling an adjusted chat timetable, with two (rather than three) chats typically starting on the second or third Saturday of the month. The sharing and learning that comes from these discussions enriches our practice and the learning experiences of our students. We hope that you will join us!

Check below for the time that best fits with your zone:

Chat 1 ~ Saturday, August 22, 2015

10:00 UTC (Europe/Asia/Australia)

  • 6:00 North Carolina, 11:00 London, 12:00 (noon) Cape Town, 15:30 New Delhi, 18:00 Perth, 20:00 Sydney, 22:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 2: Saturday, August 22, 2015

23:00 UTC (Americas/Asia/Australia).

  • Saturday night USA – 16:00 Los Angeles, 19:00 New York and North Carolina
  • Sunday morning – – 07:00 Perth, 9:00 Sydney, 11:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

We hope to see you online this weekend. Use #globalclassroom and join in on the conversation!

#globalclassroom Chat: Art, Music, Global and More!

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The thought above, from Stough Elementary School’s art teacher Daniel James Kennington, sums things up perfectly! And this same sentiment can be applied to music, physical education, computer, language and any other resource class. For those of us who are passionate about making global education a priority and not simply a privilege, the goal is to make such teaching and learning accessible to all – all students and all teachers, through all subject areas.

Inspired by Daniel’s statement, the focus of this month’s #globalclassroom chat is global integration beyond the expected place – the social studies classroom. Let’s chat about how global concepts can be tied to curriculum standards in art, music, physical education, computer, and media classes.

So bring your thoughts, rally your specialist teachers, and join us for what is sure to be a chat full of wonderful global integration ideas!

Questions

Q1: Think about special/resource/elective classes. Why is #global integration important &/or valuable in these areas? #globalclassroom

Q2: How have you seen regular classroom Ts & specialist Ts working collaboratively on #global integration? #globalclassroom

Q3: How have you &/or colleagues integrated #global content into fine #arts & other special/resource/elective classes? #globalclassroom

Q4: What helpful resources have you found for #global integration in fine #arts & other special/resource/elective classes? #globalclassroom
Times

Based on past experience with the #globalclassroom chats, we are trialling an adjusted chat timetable, with two (rather than three) chats typically starting on the second or third Saturday of the month. The sharing and learning that comes from these discussions enriches our practice and the learning experiences of our students. We hope that you will join us!

Check below for the time that best fits with your zone:

Chat 1 ~ Saturday July 25, 2015

10:00 UTC (Europe/Asia/Australia)

  • 6:00 North Carolina, 11:00 London, 12:00 (noon) Cape Town, 15:30 New Delhi, 18:00 Perth, 20:00 Sydney, 22:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 2: Saturday July 25, 2015

23:00 UTC (Americas/Asia/Australia).

  • Saturday night USA – 16:00 Los Angeles, 19:00 New York and North Carolina
  • Sunday morning – 07:00 Perth, 9:00 Sydney, 11:00 Auckland

Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

#globalclassroom Chat: Eat Your Frogs (Take 2)

June has arrived and that means it is time for another #globalclassroom chat. This month we are pleased to announce the return of two past moderators, David Potter (@GlobalReady) and Laurie Renton (@RentonL), who bring with them a slightly revised version of a past favorite – their very popular (and fun) eating frogs chat!

Eating Frogs for Global Classrooms

Do you ever participate in Twitter chats, attend free virtual conferences and connect with other like-minded educators from around the world? Do you ever wonder why there aren’t thousands of teachers and classrooms joining these totally awesome free, anytime, anywhere chats and sessions? And, more to the point, why aren’t millions of teachers and students collaborating with partners worldwide every day? As @ktvee put it during #ntchat last year:

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Perhaps it’s not that easy for most educators yet but after this month’s #globalclassroom chat maybe we can all help to make it a little easier!

The chat topic title comes from a nifty Global Education Conference keynote by the awesome social media maven Beth Kanter. While discussing procrastination, Beth asked us to “eat that frog.” Wondering what she meant? Author Brian Tracy explains:

An old saying is that, “If the first thing you do each morning is to eat a live frog, you can go through the day with the satisfaction of knowing that that is probably the worst thing that is going to happen to you all day long!” Your “FROG” is the one thing you are most likely to procrastinate on if you don’t do something about it now!  It is also the one task that can have the greatest positive impact on your life and results at the moment.

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Watch this Eat That Frog video based on a quote by Brian Tracy and uploaded by simpletruthstv.     If it’s the worst thing you do all day, things are looking up!

To further explore this idea, June’s #globalclassroom chat topic is:

How can we help our peers eat their frogs so they can connect their classrooms globally?

Questions

Q1: If you have a global classroom, what frog did you need to eat before you went global? #globalclassroom

Q2: If you would like to go global, what frog do you feel you need help eating? #globalclassroom

Q3: What can frog-eating teachers with global classrooms do to help their peers eat their respective frogs? #globalclassroom

Q4: Eating frogs can be messy. How do we best “learn to learn from each other, not just about each other?” #globalclassroom

Times

Based on past experience with the #globalclassroom chats, we are trialling an adjusted chat timetable, with two (rather than three) chats typically starting on the second (or third) Saturday of the month. The sharing and learning that comes from these discussions enriches our practice and the learning experiences of our students. We hope that you will join us!

Check below for the time that best fits with your zone:

Chat 1 ~ Saturday June 20, 2015

10:00 UTC (Europe/Asia/Australia)

  • 6:00 North Carolina, 11:00 London, 12:00 (noon) Cape Town, 15:30 New Delhi, 18:00 Perth, 20:00 Sydney, 22:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 2: Saturday June 20, 2015

23:00 UTC (Americas/Asia/Australia)

  • Saturday night USA – 16:00 Los Angeles, 19:00 New York and North Carolina
  • Sunday morning – – 07:00 Perth, 9:00 Sydney, 11:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone

What’s Your Story? – #globalclassroom chats – Saturday, May 16, 2015

We are delighted to announce the return of the #globalclassroom chats for 2015, in partnership with VIF International Education … just in time to celebrate the fourth anniversary of The Global Classroom Project!

It is hard to believe, but four years ago this month, Deb Frazier and Michael Graffin connected their classes with classes in the USA, Romania, Guatemala, Australia, and New Zealand to create a shared VoiceThread, focussing on children’s questions about life and schooling around the world. They may not know it, but there are hundreds of teachers and thousands of students around the world who owe a debt to a little boy questioning a textbook about life in India.

In May 2015, as we look forward to sharing our stories at ISTE, we’d like to invite the #globalclassroom and #globaled community to reflect on what they’ve learned, and where they’re heading as global educators.

It’s time to share your story … through the #globalclassroom chats.

Questions

Q1: Why do you connect with colleagues and classes around the world?

Q2: What’s your story? How did you begin your #globalclassroom journey?

Q3: What lessons have you learned as a global educator?

Q4: What would you like to learn or explore next on your #globalclassroom journey?


Times

Based on past experience with the #globalclassroom chats, we are trialling an adjusted chat timetable, with two (rather than three) chats (typically) starting on the second Saturday of the month.


Chat 1 ~ Saturday May 16    10:00 UTC (Europe/Asia/Australia)

  • 6:00 North Carolina, 11:00 London, 12:00 (noon) Cape Town, 15:30 New Delhi, 18:00 Perth, 20:00 Sydney, 22:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

 

Chat 2: Saturday May 16    23:00 UTC (Americas/Asia/Australia).

  • Saturday night USA – 16:00 Los Angeles, 19:00 New York and North Carolina
  • Sunday morning – – 07:00 Perth, 9:00 Sydney, 11:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone

Reflection Time: Global Projects – The #globalclassroom Chats (June 14/15)

Thank you to Heidi Hutchison @HeidiHutchison who is helping organise the chats this month, and provided our topic:

Creating and participating in global projects has fed my soul, but more importantly, it has nurtured the spirit of my students. I have come away with many positives through collaborating and partaking in global projects, but I have learned more through some failures this year. 

This weekend, we would like to reflect through sharing what worked and what didn’t work for us.

Questions for our chat:

1.)  What positives happened as a result of participating in global projects and connections (via Skype, Google hangouts, blogging, pen pals, etc.) for you and your students?

2.)  What made it difficult to participate in a global project or connection? What are some ideas to make it better?

3.)  What were some things that fell through the cracks for you and why? What did you learn about yourself that could make it better for others?

4.)  What ideas do you have for the upcoming school year? How can we connect with others to help us create and collaborate more effectively?

Please join our chat whether you participated in global projects or not. We will all learn more together and your voice is important!

Schedule

Chat 1 ~ Saturday, June 14, 10:00 – 11:00 UTC

  • 11:00 London, 12:00 (noon) Cape Town, 15:30 New Delhi, 18:00 Perth, 20:00 Sydney, 22:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 2 ~ Saturday, June 14th, 18:00 – 19:00 UTC

  • 11:00 Los Angeles, 14:00 New York, 19:00 London, 20:00 Cape Town, 06:00 SUNDAY – Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 3 ~ Sunday, June 15th, 01:00 – 02:00 UTC (Saturday in N & S America!)

  • Saturday night – 18:00 Los Angeles, 21:00 New York
  • Sunday – 06:30 New Dehli, 09:00 Perth, 11:00 Sydney, 13:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Growing Up Global – Is it changing our students? – the #globalclassroom Chats (May 10/11)

Thankyou to @beachcat11 who is helping organise the chats this month, and provided our topic.

“Men often hate each other because they fear each other;

they fear each other because they don’t know each other;

they don’t know each other because they can not communicate;

they can not communicate because they are separated.”

~~ Martin Luther King, Jr.

 

What do you think?

“Global Computer Networking” courtesy of cuteimage / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

When I first read these words, I immediately started wondering: Our kids aren’t separated in the same way any more. So will our students’ ability to connect and collaborate on a global scale eventually help to reduce human conflicts and overcome such hate and fear? Will students who regularly communicate and form relationships with students of different cultures and lifestyles become any more tolerant and understanding than those who don’t?

Our students are clearly ‘growing up global’ in a connected world — where those of us in North America regularly chat with others already in “tomorrow”, where inspiring Korean commercials can be viewed on YouTube around the world, and global projects like the Travelling Rhino project see students in classrooms around the world all working to help solve the very same issue.

As educators create and conduct more and more new global activities and projects, and as we invite world-wide student participation and collaboration, what are we learning about the effects they are having on our students’ values and beliefs? Am I just acting on some blind belief or vague assumption that these things are good for my students?? Or is there some solid body of evidence which proves this is true? What can we do to monitor and provide evidence of what is happening as a result of these global connections — if indeed, there even is any change?!?

They say that when the astronauts sent back pictures of that first human view of Earth from space, it forever changed our collective perception of Planet Earth as “Home”. And I have to wonder: like seeing our planet from space for the very first time, will ‘growing up global’ also leave an indelible mark on the human psyche? Will growing up globally connected help to create a new generation who take it for granted that we are all one connected people who must resolve our differences to work and live together as we journey through space and time on this tiny blue planet?

As our population increases and our access to resources decreases, will growing up global and learning in a connected global classroom make any difference at all to the human ability to overcome fear and hate, and to solve problems together?

What can we do to help make it so?

There are no magic answers, no miraculous methods to overcome the problems we face, just the familiar ones:  an honest search for understanding, education, organization, and action …inspired by the hope of a brighter future.

~~Noam Chomsky

 

Discussion Questions

Please join us as we discuss these issues in our next #globalclassroom chats –  this weekend!

Q1. In what global activities have your and your students participated?

Q2. What did you hope your students would gain from participating in them? Were attitudes and beliefs are an expressed part of your goal?

Q3. Did you observe any evidence of changes in your students’ attitudes and beliefs about different cultures? If so, how?

Q4. As global educators, how can we contribute to the collective knowledge and research about the effects of connected learning?

 

Schedule

Chat 1 ~ Saturday, May 10th, 10:00 – 11:00 UTC

  • 11:00 London, 12:00 (noon) Cape Town, 15:30 New Delhi, 18:00 Perth, 20:00 Sydney, 22:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 2 ~ Saturday, May 10th, 18:00 – 19:00 UTC

  • 11:00 Los Angeles, 14:00 New York, 19:00 London, 20:00 Cape Town, 06:00 SUNDAY – Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 3 ~ Sunday, May 11th, 01:00 – 02:00 UTC (Saturday in N & S America!)

  • Saturday night – 18:00 Los Angeles, 21:00 New York
  • Sunday – 06:30 New Dehli, 09:00 Perth, 11:00 Sydney, 13:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Design Thinking for Global Action (#globalclassroom chats Jan 17/18)

Source: British University of Columbia
Source: British University of Columbia

Topic

This month’s #globalclassroom chats come to us via @cerniglia and @Learn21Tech and will continue December’s discussion of global issues in the curriculum, and investigate how students can use design thinking to take global action.

Design Thinking is a thought process which involves students (and teachers) in identifying a problem or issue of importance to them, whether it be local or global, and following a problem solving process to design and implement possible solutions – i.e. taking direct action. For a more detailed explanation, we highly recommend visiting Design Thinking for Education, and downloading the Design Thinking Toolkit from Stanford University.

We are particularly interested in how teachers, students, and community members can collaborate across grades, disciplines, linguistic, geographic, and political boundaries to problem solve and develop innovative solutions for global issues.

Guiding Questions

  1. What global topics or issues do you currently study that lend themselves to interdisciplinary  or cross-curricular learning?  What boundaries could you open up that are not already open (discipline/grade/gender)?

  2. What global action projects have been most successful for you?  If not “global action,” have you had success with any project-based learning experiences? Do you have any projects or papers you would like to make more action-oriented?

  3. How do you inspire/motivate/encourage students’ creativity in your class? Do your assignments and feedback encourage them to “keep thinking” or “keep thinking until [they get it right/get it done]?”

  4. What personal experience do you have with design thinking? Have you applied this to global issues and global action?

  5. What curriculum-aligned global action would you like your students to take? How could you support them to use design-thinking to move towards this goal?

Schedule

Chat 1 ~ Saturday, January 18th, 10:00 – 11:00 UTC

  • 10:00 London, 12:00 (noon) Cape Town, 15:30 New Delhi, 18:00 Perth, 21:00 Sydney, 23:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 2 ~ Saturday, January 18th, 18:00 – 19:00 UTC

  • 10:00 Los Angeles, 13:00 New York, 18:00 London, 20:00 Cape Town, 07:00 SUNDAY – Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.

Chat 3 ~ Sunday, January 19th, 01:00 – 02:00 UTC (Saturday in N & S America!)

  • Saturday night – 17:00 Los Angeles, 20:00 New York
  • Sunday – 06:30 New Dehli, 09:00 Perth, 12:00 Sydney, 14:00 Auckland
  • Click here to find out when this is in YOUR timezone.