Happy Chinese New Year!

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On the last night of our summer holidays in  Broadbeach, my husband and I decided to  go to the night craft markets at   Surfers Paradise . As we walked along the mall, we could hear music and singing. It was part of a celebration of the Chinese New Year. 120 students had come from 3 cities in China to help share Chinese culture through music, singing and dancing with the people of the Gold Coast. What a treat this was!

As I watched, I started to realise the impact that 2010 has had on me as a teacher and the amazing potential that  technology has for education.

During 2010:-

  • My year 11 Information Technology class  joined and merged virtually with a class in Malaysia for  a 5 week period, using the software – elluminate. There were Chinese students in this class.
  • In September, I travelled to Malaysia and spent time in a Chinese school, SMJK POI LAM, conducting workshops for teachers and students and met face to face the above virtual class from Kuala Lumpur.
  • Veronica Woo, my colleague from SMJK POI LAM, has used videoconferencing to share an eCultural Journey and the farewell celebrations for their Principal, including the Chinese Lion dance.

Implications for education

  • Classes/teachers can connect to anyone/anytime/anywhere for empowered classrooms using videoconferencing, virtual classroom software and virtual worlds.
  • My year 11 students maintain that the highlight of their time in Information Technology was the direct linkup with the Malaysian students where they could chat to each other, share a whiteboard with each other and discuss likes, cultural differences but also learn that they had the same ideals etc. They said that it felt like the Malaysian students were just next door to their room and not thousands of kilometres away.
  • Why should we use textbooks and read about other cultures when we can see, feel, hear, share by using technology  in a virtual classroom or by using videoconferencing.
  • Learn the language direct from each other
  • Share conversations and blog posts
  • When the timetable changed and we could not longer work in real time together, students found each other on facebook and the connections continue outside of school hours.

Technology has the power to transform education.Why aren’t we doing more of this? Why is it not becoming mainstream? How do we get it to become mainstream?

Finally, happy New Year to the Chinese Community!


12 responses to “Happy Chinese New Year!

  1. Pingback: How to embed slideshare in Wordpress blogs | On an e-Journey with Generation Y

  2. Murcha
    Beautiful slideshow and isn’t it great that you perservered to get it working on wordpress.
    Your post is challenging as well. I think this year I will try to contact one class in a culture some place really different to us. Not Australia! And see can we set up some kind of learning journey. Will need to be someone in the same time zoneish.

    • I am glad that I perservered, as I have really resigned myself to the fact that I would have a very plain wordpress blog. Obviously the coders are out there adapting the online tools code for embedding. However, it is this challenge and watching others work outside their comfort zone that really gave me the determination and courage to do so.

    • Hi Kathryn, students just love to link up with students in other countries. The east coast of Australia fits in well with many of the Asian time zones. The easiest countries to work with are those that speak English eg USA and Canada but they are in awkward time zones for us. Malaysia and Singapore speak English as their second or third language so they are good to work with and their cultures are so different. And yet……. underneath it all they all have the same ideals, aspirations and hopes for our global world.
      Have you videoconferenced with anyone else? Australia is in a good time zone to connect with you but we are a similar culture.

  3. Beautiful slide show, Anne. I agree about the power of technology in education. I’m just taking baby steps toward using it as you have! Thanks for inspiring us. Denise

    • Thanks Denise for your comment. Baby steps is the only way to go, but I wish all teachers would take that very first step and not put up blockers!

  4. Pingback: The Nerve of that Blog! | On an e-Journey with Generation Y

  5. “兔年吉祥!
    Tù nián jí xiáng!
    Good Luck in the Year of the Rabbit!”
    Happy Chinese New Year 2011 to you….
    Thank you for sharing those pictures

  6. Great Job Anne . “xin nian kuai le, wan shi ru yi” . very happy can meet you in Elluminate. If more teacher do the job like you the world will be beautiful and peace.

    • Thank you Zegna for your kind words. Happy New Year to you and your family and look forward to working with you again this year.

  7. Great slide show! I tried one on my blog this week, too, but I’m not so impressed with the results…

    • Hi Elsbeth, I think with the slideshow in wordpress, images that are taken in portrait work better than landscape. Also I think straight images are better, rather than screen grabs with a lot of text. However, we can still read the titles of your images and search to find the actual sites if we want to. Maybe it is better just getting a grab of the header so that is closer up rather than capture a lot of the text.
      I still like the moving images as I am a curious person and I wanted to know what the next image on your slide show would telll me. The slide show does look great though, doesn’t it and I am so glad that I found out it exists as I battled to get any movement on my wordpress blog but now I can have a much more captivating site.

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