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Go global to flatten classroom walls

By Team ISTE
March 18, 2015
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We live in a global society. Borders have become blurry and even the smallest companies are working with people from other countries. As emerging technologies continue to shrink the world, it's vital that today's students are prepared to collaborate with peers across cultures. One way to do this is to create global classroom opportunities.

Educators need to flatten classroom walls, said global educator and author Julie Lindsay, who is hosting Thursday's ISTE Professional Learning Series webinar, " "Getting Started with Connected Learning and Global Collaboration." " By flattening classroom walls, we're also able to flatten the learning process. The goal is to eliminate the borders and obstacles that separate students and education.

That goes for educators, too. Lindsay thinks educators everywhere can learn a lot of new, exciting techniques from counterparts in other places.

Think 'glocal'

It's all about bringing global ideas and practices into the local community. There's a growing interest in this concept, which is called " "glocalization." " ISTE has a Global Professional Learning Network — 300 members and growing! — where educators can share resources on how to use technology to create global classroom environments, an idea that Lindsay will share in her webinar.

The Global PLN is a very important tool for connected educators because it offers opportunities for discussions and for developing partnerships and projects with a small but growing global network. It's not just about the ability to synchronize activities, but to build opportunities.

Build the global classroom one grade at a time

Students of all ages can adapt to working with others remotely. Second graders in Vancouver, British Columbia, are using Skype to practice reading with second graders thousands of miles away. And high school students around the globe are working on collaborative projects with peers in far-flung places. They not only collaborate, but practice language-immersion skills and discuss current events and global issues too.

If you'd like to learn more, join the webinar to discover how you can:  

  • Develop your students' digital citizenship skills.
  • Interact with classrooms from other parts of the world.
  • Get tips on using technology in the global classroom environment.
  • Learn from educators in other countries.