Being part of FCGP is an new experience for me and my Year 11, English as a Second Language students. In fact, we are the first class at our school to be part of this innovative use of technology to collaborate and to co-create globally.
We started by contributing to the Project’s Ning with an introductory hand shake and setting up a personal Page. We then read The Horizon Report which is the key focus of the project and students wrote a review that they cross blogged to their Weebly blog and the Ning. Students used SoundCloud to practise their speaking. Please open the ThingLink icons in the image above to hear their voices and to read their blogs.
Using technology and communicating asynchronously has been a challenge that has developed discussions and understandings of what it means to be a global digital citizen. Here are their reflections on the FCGP so far:
The Flat Connection is a great way to reach out to the world and check out what the rest of the world is doing. Being a global citizen, it is easy to be humble and accepting other ideas because there is a big world outside this country. Working with students whom I am not familiar with gives me inspiration and challenges at the same time. When I found out they had added new information on the Google Doc I had fresh perspectives on my topic. Whereas, when I found no one is responding to my messages was frustrated. Overall, this is a good exercise to practice our collaboration skills.
Joining the Flat Connections Global Project has been a big challenge and one of the most awesome things that have happened in my school life. The biggest challenge is communicating with my group members because we are in different countries and time zones. For example, when I post a message on my group’s Google doc. I need to wait for ages to have a reply. On the other hand, there are impressive moments such as doing research on my topic and learning cultural metaphors from other countries.
The Flat Connections Project gives me a great opportunity to study and communicate online with overseas students. I highly appreciated this program, although there were a lot of challenges I have faced during the time, such as, asking for the wiki-code to join in the class group, find other members of my group, time difference, etc. Especially with the time difference, I am more patient and not easy daunted after I have used this program, because it is very often that you leave a message to somebody then receive a reply after couples of days. Nevertheless, this project makes me more thoughtful before I put something on the website. I have met awesome people from other countries, and expanding my vocabulary.
Being in the Flat Connection Project, we are sometimes depressed because the members of our groups do not reply. However, it is wonderful to connect, collaborate and communicate with people from the United States, which is on the other side of the globe. As a matter of fact, something can always be invented or ameliorated when a group of people with curiosity and passion work together and gather all the information in order to have some insightful ideas. This is what innovation is. It is about thinking, exploring and persistence. Teamwork makes the world better.
Flat connection and wiki spaces are innovative for us and they are good media to communicate with different students from different countries. The organizer of flat connection organized a group of students and teachers to finish one project, which is of concern to our future life. Meanwhile, it gives us a challenge to work with people who we are not acquainted with before and have a time difference between two different areas. We use the Google doc, to share information that we’ve researched. People that are working in the same group can see the primary source we put on immediately, which is very convenient. In conclusion, this is an encouraging challenge for all of us to finish one project together and we can have more chances to communicate with students from different counties.
For me these comments show how my students are developing not only their communication and technical skills but they are becoming independent learners with the courage and the persistence to overcome any challenges, to communicate respectfully, and to work in a team to achieve the Project’s outcomes.