Working from a distance

I’m in Boston. But back in Virginia, my students had just started a cool project with Heather Durnin’s class from Turnberry Central Public School, in Wingham, Ontario. I met Heather on a ning we were both working in for the Powerful Learning Practice (long before I started working with the PLP).We were both studying social justice issues, so we decided to pair our students to research a topic, answer essential questions, and create a Voice Thread with the results. This week was not a good time to leave my students alone. But with Heather’s help (she has had to take the lead on most of this for me), our students have continued to work. She posted these photos today of our kids skyping (keep in mind, I am in Boston and my kids are with a substitute in VA, and they are skyping with students in Ontario–amazing!)

I love feeling connected to them and their work, and I am so appreciative that they can continue on without me. I received this email today from one of my kids:

good news today in class almost all of us got to skype our turnstudents!!!!! it was a lot of fun and helpful! I hope you can return soon. All of the 8th grade misses you and wishes you the best!!!!!!!!!! :D
~ Rachael
Tonight I skimmed all the Google Docs where they are collaborating, and most of them are making progress. For those who aren’t, I left little love notes. So easy–from my hotel to their classroom.
Powerful Learning Practice (and Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach in particular)  often speaks about how we are better together. Tonight those words ring true.