GLOBAL COLLABORATION WEEK (September 17th to 21st)

Here we are again at the beginning of another school year and already we have a virtual education conference in the offing. Starting today Global Collaboration Week begins with a great range of synchronous and asynchronous events to bring teachers, students and organisations across the globe together online to celebrate global connectivity in the classroom. Organised by Lucy Gray and Steve Hargadon, the founders and co-chairs of the Global Education Conference Network, this year the fourth annual Global Collaboration Day has been extended to 5 days which shows the increased level of interest in global education amongst educators over the last few years.

In the lead up to the event, experienced global educators through the Global Education Conference Network have been invited to create and host virtual events designed to demonstrate the power of global classroom connectivity and the opportunities this connectivity represents for increased student engagement and learning; whilst at the same time introducing educators to the huge variety of resources, connected projects and networks that are currently available. According to the website blurb:

“This is an opportunity for educators new to globally connected teaching and learning to participate in virtual activities designed by more experienced teachers. It’s also a great way for educators running ongoing global projects to find project partners!”

In a nutshell if you’re interested in connecting with teachers and students in other countries, particularly with regards to project based learning, then this is a good place to start. Events during the week include a K12 art collaboration under the theme “Our Lives, Our Culture”, an information event on virtual exchanges organised by Knowmyworld.org and a session on how to use Google Tour Builder to connect globally.

As I write there are currently 918 individual participants registered with Eventbrite for the week’s events with over 452 schools and organisations across 84 countries represented. These will attend one or more of the 30 plus events currently available. To sign up for an event all you need to do is register at Eventbrite and follow the instructions for participation (see below for more information). The web conferencing tools used for the live events are dependent on the individual event’s host so expect everything from Google Hangouts to Zoom web conferencing and even Facebook live sessions. There’s also a very helpful calendar that helps to determine any time zone conflicts you may encounter but the good news is that a lot of the events are recorded so can be viewed at any time if you can’t make it to the live event. Here are a number of key links with all of the details to get you up and running.

Looking at the list of participating schools I can’t see any from Ireland but hopefully that will change over the week. For those teachers and schools which do sign up there are some great badges available that you can display on your school website or social media account and as always you can also be part of the conversation throughout the week by using the hashtag #globaled18.

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