Connecting with Skype

Skype is a wonderful tool that allows students to connect with other students, their teachers, or other educators or instructors around the world. In my school we already have multiple teachers using Skype for educational purposes. For example, our STEM teachers Skype’d with a building contractor in India to discuss building a bridge project that they were working on. Another teacher Skype’s with her students that take her summer course that is completely online to answer questions and conduct a final interview about their experience with the course.

I do not see myself using Skype in my traditional classroom as it is currently, but in my future as an online educator I find that it is important to connect with your students via Skype at least one time during the course, preferably at the beginning. I think that this allows for a connection to be made between teacher and student, while at the same time opening the lines of communication between them. I do see myself using Skype to connect with other colleagues, which I have already done in the past during the summer months. I have used it to collaborate with my Department Head about a new course that I was teaching for the first time, and this was a great way to accomplish things quickly and efficiently, more so than it would have been through email.

How have you used Skype in your own classroom? Or has another teacher in your building used it with great success? I know that I love hearing about how teachers in my high school are using it, so I would love to hear about your experiences as well!

3 thoughts on “Connecting with Skype

  1. Hi Lauren,
    It was great to hear about some examples of Skype used by the teachers in your school. I love the idea of Skyping someone from another country as a way of communication. I think the idea of a virtual pen pal could work in the elementary schools. I could connect with another teacher from another country and we could have our students Skype with each other. I feel that this would really get students excited and they would definitely learn from this activity.

  2. Skyping is FUN . . . I love the emoji . . . . some of my co-workers and I will send each other a slice of Pizza when we are ready form lunch . . . Or I can Skype on of my programming co-workers about a snip-it of code and we can work together via Skype to solve and issues without having to call or walk across campus.

    That is so COOL that your SD is Skyping with people around the world for a bridge building. I wish this technology would have been around when I worked at SONY because it would have been so cool to Skype with co-workers in State College, PA or San Diego, Ca or Japan.

    I see a great future for the Skype for Learning & Skype for Business . . . . It can only Grow from here. . . Thanks Maggie

  3. Lauren,
    I completely agree that meeting with online students through Skype is a great way to get to know them. Doing it at the beginning of the course is the most logical, but I would try to do it a few times. This will give me a better sense of my students and their understanding of the concepts I am teaching them. I also think it is a great way to collaborate with colleagues. I didn’t think of this until I read your post, but it would be a great way to talk with my teammates during the summer months. We always try to set up a couple meetings, but most of the time our schedules don’t match up. We can accomplish the same outcomes if we meet through Skype. Thanks for the idea!!

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