Using Skype

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An AP Civics teacher tries "Skype" by having an interactive session with another School District's Civics teacher on the 2008 Presidential Candidates. Students in both schools research the answers to specific topics and write responses. Students then read their answer to the other school students. Each teacher directed the interaction over Skype. After the lesson was completed, the teacher was thrilled with the use of the technology and the student written responses.

1) Could you analyze the student responses and see how many students were going beyond the reporting of facts and using analysis and synthesis to create their responses? What patterns amongst the responses do you notice?

(Prompt to have teachers analyze student work)

2) Could you have a debate as a follow-up activity? What skills would you want students to use, and what would be the criteria for success? Could you and your colleague at the other school create a rubric to define those criteria?

(Prompt for follow-up lesson)

3) What did you notice about the interaction between the schools? Could you develop a way they could share their analyses? What can we do to take the interaction of your students from an emphasis on facts to a model emphasizing the skill of comparison and contrast?

(Prompt to create ways to deepen study)

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