New resources help with using Skype in the classroom

Skype, the Microsoft-owned service that lets users connect for voice or video chats free of charge through any internet-enabled device, has teamed up with Penguin Group, New York Philharmonic, the Science Museum of London, Peace One Day, and Save the Children to provide teachers with educational content and access to expert speakers.

The collaboration marks Skype’s latest effort to reach its goal of connecting one million classrooms globally through “Skype in the classroom,” a free online community that helps teachers use Skype to enrich experiences for students.

“Skype in the classroom is excited to collaborate with stellar, like-minded organizations to bring relevant content directly to innovative teachers who are looking to create unforgettable shared learning experiences for their students,” said Tony Bates, president of the Skype Division at Microsoft. “We are dedicated to making education accessible via technology and will continue to look for ways to remove barriers to communications and connect to classrooms across the globe.”

Skype in the classroom aims to enrich students’ learning experiences to discover new cultures, languages, and ideas without leaving the classroom. Through these new partnerships…

• Penguin Young Readers Group will connect authors with students for discussions about books, reading, and writing;

• The New York Philharmonic will offer live interaction with musicians and educators, beginning with an exploration of Billy the Kid through the lens of Aaron Copland’s 1939 ballet; and

•  Registered teachers have the opportunity to link directly to the free Skype-supported Peace One Day Global Education Resources and to educate their students about the importance of peace. Students also can connect with Peace One Day Founder Jeremy Gilley and listen to his inspirational story, questioning him on all aspects of his journey to institutionalize Peace Day on Sept. 21.

Save the Children and the Science Museum of London will have individual projects on Skype in the classroom by the end of the year.

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