Skype is a free application that allows users to make free audio and video calls through their internet connection. Skype is a type of Voice over Internet Protocol (VoIP) application, which uses your dial-up or broadband connection to make free calls over the internet. You can use Skype to connect with one person or a group. It features a chat function, file sharing, audio and video connections, and so much more. Teachers are using Skype to connect their students with classrooms on the other side of the world, to collaborate on projects, and to share materials.
WHY USE SKYPE?
- Check out this wonderful post by Silvia Tolisano, an edublogger who writes at Langwitches. In it, she outlines not only how she has used Skype but why Skype is such a great resource for teachers.
- Not convinced? Watch this. Brian Crosby's fourth grade class connects to a classmate via Skype.
Below you will find examples of how teachers have used Skype with their students. Their reflections offer insights on the benefits as well as the complications encountered when they opened up their classroom doors.
- On an e-jourey with Generation Y is a blog by Australian teacher Anne Mirtschin. She reflects on why using Skype was one of her students' most memorable moments in her class.
- Check out the amazing ways that teachers have been using Skype. Scroll down to read the "Comments" section of this wiki page.
- Don't be a dummy, check out this Skype for teachers Dummies page.
- The School Library Journal also featured an article about using Skype in the Classroom.
- Neil Stephenson writes about the Many Roles of Skype in his middle school classroom.
- How can you use Skype? Try one of these ideas:
Connect your class to virtual pen pals
Help students hear native speakers when learning a foreign language
Collaborate with another class on a joint research project
Bring authors into your classroom via a Skype
Learn about another culture by connecting students to a classroom from that culture
Learn about geography from students living in an area you are studying
Bring professionals from your content area to "speak" in your classroom
Create pod- and screencasts with students from other parts of the world
Study the same book with another class and hold web book talks
Have students in your class create virtual presentations for students in other schools
Attend a webinar with your students
GETTING STARTED WITH SKYPE:
- You'll find a number of free video tutorials to help you start using Skype at Tutorpipes.
- If you would rather print out directions for setting up your Skype account, click on this link to Eric Curts document on Skype.
- So, go to Skype and download the application and create an account.
- Sue Waters is The Edublogger and offers Quick Start Up Tips for New Skype Users
- And, you can always find help through Skype's Help page.
- The Skype in Schools page offers a good list of Skype add-ons.
- Skype has a cool list of applications made with teachers in mind. Download them today!
- Recorder for Skype - Collaborating with another school on a project and want to record your Skype call so you can replay the audio later? Use the Skype Call Recorder to create podcasts of your calls.
Use these links to find other teachers and classroom projects to connect to
- Sue Waters at The Edublogger has put together this list of teachers interested in using Skype in their classroom. It is organized by country and subject area.
- This is an excellent directory of teachers organized by state. Add you information if you are interested in connecting with other classrooms.
- Also, check out the resources that I've collected through my Delicious account.