This week’s Tech Tip was about Skype. Skype is a FREE download that allows you to use your computer to call anyone in the world for FREE! (As long as they have a Skype account too!) You don’t have to HAVE a webcam, but if you do, you can have video chats with the other person. This program is allowing schools around the world to connect with each other and collaborate. Studying Mexico? Maybe there is a classroom there that would like to connect with you. Studying the Middle East? Maybe there is a soldier in Iraq that would be willing to talk with your students. The possibilities are endless!!! Click HERE for more ideas!
You are probably asking yourself…how in the world do I find people to talk with??? Because of social networking, this task is becoming much easier. Here are some things to think about –
1. Think about your personal connections. Cousins, aunts, friends, etc! Are any of them in a different area of the world? Does their location tie into your curriculum? If so, would they be willing to communicate with you?
2. Create a Twitter account to connect with teachers around the world. Many teachers are willing to collaborate with another classroom!
3. Join www.classroom20.com and post a message in regards to who you are looking for.
4. Look at and join http://skypeinschools.pbworks.com to see if there is anyone already looking for a class like yours.
5. Ask me to help you!
Here is a site with some great tutorials about Skype – http://www.top-windows-tutorials.com/install-skype.html (Step 2, 3, and 4 have tutorial videos embedded in.)
If you would like to download Skype at home, here is the download page – http://www.skype.com/intl/en/download/skype/windows/?c=204. If you would like Skype on your school computer, you will need to put in a helpdesk request for the software. If you want to do video calls, you will have to helpdesk the Logitech software as well. Both schools will soon have webcams for checkout through the library so that you can make video calls.
Skype is an amazingly powerful tool! If you have any further questions about it, please let me know! I would love to help you find someone to connect with!