‘Collaboration’ is a concept I’m continuing to think about and explore as I look towards implementing meaningful future-focused pedagogies in my classroom and in my school next year. I confess I’m still a bit fuzzy on the definition, but it’s clear that it’s more than ‘sharing’ or ‘liking’ something on Facebook, for example. However, it seems to be a buzzword, and a consistent one at that, so I feel it behooves me to do some research.
I’ve come across this article from the Edudemic site (and found from following them on Twitter – go me!), which I think outlines some non-threatening steps that every teacher could try. I like that it ranges from: switch your desks around so that the students don’t just all face the front like drones waiting for pearls of wisdom (mixed metaphor much) to finding other classes to tweet or skype with. I used to teach in England. I have friends who are teachers in Australia. There are possibilities there if you’re open to them. Heck, a teacher told me recently that they did the ‘old fashioned’ thing of matching a NZ class up with pen pals in another country. They wrote letters to one another. Yes, snail mail letters. And the kids loved it. Collaboration doesn’t have to be digital. And it doesn’t have to be new and scary.