Monday, November 29, 2010

Skype In The Classroom

Skype has recently announced the development of a directory of Skype educators - teachers who use Skype to reach out to the world from their classrooms.

For those of you who haven't heard, Skype is a free Voice-Over-Internet Protocol (VOIP) service.  It allows you to share voice-to-voice (if you have a microphone) or video-to-video (if you have a web cam) with other Skype users absolutely free.  It is being used increasingly by educators in much the same way as inviting guest speakers into your classroom - only this is world-wide and doesn't require travel - and did I mention it's free?

Skype's newest development is this directory of Skype-ers for education.  They're starting out with educators who want to connect with other educators - sort of like the old adopt-a-classroom or "Flat Stanley" relationships many of us used to cultivate.  They hope to expand to other users to help educators connect with the private sector as well.

All you have to do is register, expand your profile a little to help others decide if they want to connect with you, and start Skype-ing away.  Then, connect a web cam or microphone to your computer.  The directory they create will help educators connect with one another to mutually enrich their classrooms.

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