Target 1. Student-Centered Learning – FWSU students will engage in personalized learning involving collaborative inquiry, problem solving and creative learning opportunities.
Action Step – Increase easily accessible opportunities for global collaboration for teachers and students.
Indicator of Success – Students and staff will participate in a global dialogue to engage in authentic investigation and problem solving with partners located outside of their school community.
This week over one hundred-eighty 3rd, 4th and 5th grade students from BFA and GEMS participated in a live global learning experience with students in South Korea. The live classroom, held via Skype, was the culmination of 6 weeks of dialogue and collaboration with partner classrooms in schools across South Korea.
The program was sponsored by IVECA – The Center for International Virtual Schooling. IVECA is non-profit organization that is committed to promoting cultural competence in schools all over the world. FWSU schools are the first in Vermont to work with this esteemed program which has been recognized by the United Nations.
In addition to working on projects together, the students also became friends and were so excited to meet their friends in partner schools.
“By promoting Intercultural Competence, IVECA helps students to communicate with one another in different cultures and countries. The program provides a virtual environment that enables students to share subject matters and socialize within the program,” stated IVECA Executive Director Dr. Eunhee Jung.
The virtual exchange can be summed up by a quote form one of our teachers. “My kids absolutely loved “meeting” their new friends last night. They were fascinated by the handbooks, food, and the Korean children playing the Gangnam. Our new friends want to continue communicating with us and I think that would be great.” This spring additional classrooms in grades 5, 6, 7 and 8 will be joining the global conversation.
The IVECA program at GEMS and BFA was made possible by the outstanding work of teachers Sandy Brown (BFA), Kendra Myers (BFA), Rhonda Siemons (BFA), Heather Sikorsky (GEMS), Kay Lee (GEMS), Stacey Sullivan (GEMS), Dayle Payne (GEMS) and Angelique Fairbrother (FWSU). Our teachers’ virtual exchange programs epitomize the FWSU Action Plan goal of Global Collaboration as well as Student-Centered Learning.