Skype Video Chat

Alyssa Bartle, Char Evanson, Karena Cooper, and Courtney McNierney


Descriptions of Tool:

     Skype is a technological tool that enables people to use video, internet calling, and instant messaging in order to communicate with each other. Skype is very user friendly not only because there are the options of talking or messaging but because it is a free tool that can be used internationally. In order to begin using Skype a person needs to go to and download the program. This can be done by clicking "get skype" in the top tool bar and then choose the type of computer you are downloading this tool on and begin your download. After downloading the program, an account will need to be set up with a valid e-mail in order to establish a contact that people can find. A profile will be set up too using personal information however, the real name does not need to be used. The person can then search for contacts to start communicating. Skype does have a helpful user guide that will walk you through the ins and outs of the program once you have established an account. 

     For an in-depth tutorial on how to use skype watch the following video:



Application to Teaching and Learning:

1.      Any Grade. Students can either go on a field trip to history museums or if that is not possible they can sometimes take virtual tours of certain exhibits. What can make this experience more meaningful is to hook up with an expert from the museum on Skype with the class so that the students can ask questions or the expert can inform and enrich their experience. As the teacher you can also have the students teach another class about what they learned through their field trip or virtual tour. This creates a sense of global community and allows the students to use their higher level thinking skills to evaluate and teach others about a subject.




2.      Grades 5-12. Students will investigate civics by exploring the Colorado State Government Webpage. They will look through several informational texts to gain different perspectives of how the Colorado government is run. Then as a class, the students will Skype with the representative, the governor, or any of the board members to ask questions about pressing issues of the day. Skype is a meaningful tool to use in order to gain first-hand experience discussing important issues with someone in political power.  Students will feel more connected to their government and have a sense of importance in their country.




3.      Students will first research information about a different culture or country. Then they will develop inquiry questions for the purpose of sharing them with another class in that particular culture or country. For example, if a class was doing a unit on Australia, the teacher would get connected with a teacher in Australia to Skype with so that each class can ask and answer questions. Overall, it is a very linguistic learning experience where students will gain skills in communication and learning about foreign cultures and countries.  




Technical: Web Links/ Other ideas for the classroom

     Virtual author is a place to join a network of authors. The authors are willing to Skype a classroom to speak to the children about their book.

     This website is providing teachers with the resources they need to use Skype in their classroom. It has a list of teachers using the program, it provides lessons already taught in categories and  a collection of their favorite  lessons used , and  it has a list of the partners they collaborate with. They also have a video showing you how to set it up in your classroom.

     This is a video of students who are learning from real world experiences.  They have the opportunity to talk to people from England, Uganda and the states. Most of the students are working in small groups where they are able to chat, text and even have phone conferences though Skype. 

            "Languages Out There" combines the classroom with the street. It is a free virtual learning space where students will learn English, grammar rules and vocabulary.  It is an experience that is interactive, fun, and uniquely effective.

            This website comes  from New Jersey Education Association. It is an article that breaks down the  importance of Skype in the classroom and  how to break down the  barriers of communication. The article provides the user with tips on how to use Skype, lessons, and how to assess our students learning using Skype.



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Video source:

     Wan, Millen, dir. Skype Tutorial., 2012. Web. 14 November 2012.