Reaching out…with Skype

Last week I had the pleasure of attending a hands-on workshop that was presented by Matt Miller (if you haven’t had a chance to explore his website, you should! There are so many great resources he has made available).  This full day was filled with so many meaningful learning (such a coincidence that the title of it was The Meaningful Tech Workshop) and a lot of interaction…it was everything I could have hoped it would be.  I walked away with so many practical tools I can share with the teachers I work with, that now it’s just a matter of trying to figure out which one to start with!

After some deliberation, I decided to begin with the one tech tool I was least familiar with-Skype. I have heard about Skype for years, and even participated in a number of Skype calls, but I had a really hard time wrapping my head around how to use it in the classroom.  Matt arranged for the group to participate in a Mystery Skype call with a 5th grade class in Iowa.


For this particular session, we used a number of yes/no questions to determine their location (while they were doing the same to us).  It was fantastic! Afterwards, we had a chance to hear from the classroom teacher, as she explained and showed us the various jobs that each of her students were engaged in behind the scenes.  I just love this idea!! A Mystery Number Skype was also talked about, which is where I am going to start with one of the 5th-grade teachers I am working with.  What a wonderful way to interact with other students while also applying content knowledge in a relevant way.  He also, provided us with a number of resources to help us connect with other teachers.

In addition to the Mystery Skypes, he opened my eyes to the various Virtual Field trips and Guest Speakers (check out this website) that have been vetted by Skype for appropriateness in the classroom as well as providing us with resources to use with them as well.

I am so excited to take this next step in my tech coaching journey!!

Do you use Skype in your classroom? If so, how?


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