St Mary’s Catholic Primary School, Loughborough
This project linked Year 5 class in Loughborough with a class of similar age in Grundschule Am Albertschact, near Dresden in Germany, using various methods including Skype. The topics for the school year were My School and My Region, as well as Christmas (for the winter period). The pupils used technology available to them in school, such as computers, cameras and iPods. They created posters and slide shows, while also learning some German language.
The idea of the project was to use Skype for communication between the pupils from Germany and England. During the Skype link up the children presented themselves, their school and their home region with the help of visual footage they had created using Flip Cam’s and iPods. They also took pictures and made posters to display their findings and information. This was followed up with an exchange of questions and answers between the pupils
The project was also linked to the children’s work in Geography and Science through researching their local area; Modern Foreign Languages by learning German words and singing a German song; and ICT by using various ICT based communication tools and applications to showcase their work. The topics My School and Christmas are now included in the curriculum for SEAL and RE lessons for Year 5 pupils.
A wide variety of ICT tools were used to complete the project and both the students and the teacher developed their use of ICT including innovative Web 2.0 tools. The eTwinning Twinspace was used to record and exchange information. (eTwinning Twinspace Guidelines are available). They used Skype to communicate with each other. Video diaries and a documentary were created using iPods and digital cameras. PowerPoint presentations were made to showcase photos, artwork and information on the different projects.
The most important reward for St Mary’s was that the children showed a great interest in exploring another country and its way of life, as well as demonstrating increased motivation in learning a foreign language. They were always eager to participate, found information themselves, drew pictures, made posters, presented the project to other classes, learned to use Powerpoint and other technologies and learnt new vocabulary in English and German. The project also brought the class together, as the pupils were working as a team. Through these activities the children also became ambassadors for the school.
The project has been a huge success and are planning to link up more classes this new academic year. They were also runners up in the Guardian's “Innovation in the Classroom” Awards.
This project received a Quality Label from the UK eTwinning team.