I was sent a link to this useful Guide to Using Skype in the Classroom and thought that it was worthwhile giving it a mention as it may be something that teachers might consider for the forthcoming school year. The Guide gives a step-by-step explanation on how to set up Skype and then gives some examples on how teachers are using Skype in the classroom. Some examples may be quite American and may not work here in Ireland, but the examples might spark an interest in teachers to use Skype in a different way. There are mentions of some Skype apps as well as pros and cons in using Skype in the classroom.
I used Skype with my 6th class for the first time in May when we linked up with a New York elementary school who were doing a Skype project where they were talking to schools all over the globe on the theme of “Community” for the entire day via Skype. It was called a “9 to 9 Skype Conference” because they were going to do it for twelve hours in school! Because of the time difference, I think that we were one of their first schools. They were quite well organised and prepared and my pupils had to talk about their ideas on the theme of “Community”. It went quite well for our first experience of Skype in the classroom. You can read what my pupils wrote about the conference HERE
If you’ve used Skype in the classroom, please leave a comment below and let us know how it worked out. You could also give other teachers some ideas on how to set it up and how to get the most benefit out of it.
I came across this video on Vimeo which explains how to set up a Skype project: