Skype in the Classroom with Ryan Tindale

A month ago I was contacted by Ryan Tindale, a teacher with the Durham District School Board (DDSB) in Ontario Canada who has become an avid user of video conferencing in the classroom. Ryan has compiled over 1400 teacher downloads and several resources related to teaching with technology which can be found on TeachersPayTeachers. He has been featured in online articles and newspapers, and his audience of readers continues to grow. 

Ryan tried Skype for the first time three years ago to connect with penpals in different countries. Last year Ryan used Skype a few more times to connect his students with even more global learning partners. This year, Ryan has engaged his students in over 30 video conferences to bring the field trip experience into his classroom and connect his students with experts around the world.  Here is video of Ryan talking about his experiences using Skype in the classroom:

One of Ryan’s most recent series of virtual collaborations was designed to support his students with their persuasive writing summative assignments. Students were asked to choose a profession and write a persuasive text about that profession. Ryan’s students connected with a journalist, lawyer, farmer, firefighter, stay-at-home mom, CEO, and archaeologist in the first week!

Ryan’s dedication to commitment to global collaborative learning is not only helping his students learn how to communicate, collaborate, and network with a variety of experts, but Ryan is engaging his students in experiential learning that will help shape his students’ career choices in the future. Imagine if every K-12 teacher used resources like the Digital Human Library to connect their students with the experts even just twice a year? That would mean that by the end of grade 12 students would have had the opportunity to collaborate with over 24 professionals and develop the interpersonal skills they need to be successful. What’s more, those students would have been exposed to over 24 careers which will help them make more informed choices about their own career paths down the road. Imagine the possibilities . . .

Ryan has created a Skype handout detailing a dozen ways he has used Skype in his classroom. Here is sneak peak . . .
To view Ryan’s complete handout, you can visit his TeachersPayTeachers Teaching Smarter account here.

I hope you will take some time to learn more about the many ways Ryan is creating global connections for his learners by visiting his Teaching Smarter website!

As always, I hope that you are feeling inspired to try something new and bring the field trip experience into your classroom!

Leigh Cassell

This post is also available in: French