|Dr. Adara Goldberg "visiting" our class. |
Photo courtesy L. Unger.
In the case of this Mystery Skype, Adara knew where we were located, so it was just my students trying to figure out where she was. In the days leading up to the Skype, many students speculated that she was from Europe, since we were discussing the Holocaust and they knew that our guest was an expert on the subject. The first 10 minutes of our Skype was the students figuring out her location via "yes/no" questions. It is very important to ensure that your guest doesn't have her location on her profile, because some students saw it! It is also important not to make mention of your guest's name (even if it is just her first name), because one bright student simply Googled "Adara Holocaust" and up popped her location. Amateur mistakes!!! Fortunately, those students confided to me that they knew her location and promised not to spoil it.
|Students getting prepared. Photo courtesy |
either L. Unger or Cody F.
|List of Jobs. Photo courtesy L. Unger.|
I got the job list from various sources, but I don't think I need to be so formal. My students were able to maintain organization without needing certain jobs, such as the boss or runners. For future Skypes, I think we will be good with some specific jobs, like greeter, closer, and photographer. I think we will be fine with students taking control of asking questions without them being funneled to a single questioner. I feel the same way about the note takers. I think I will have many students take on that role.
The following day, I asked my class for some feedback about the Skype. Overall, the students were positive. They said they enjoyed getting information from sources other than the Internet, videos or me. They also said that they benefited from having specific questions answered. One student noticed that they needed to improve some of their questions, because they already knew some of the information that the questions focused on.
Overall, the experience of inviting in an expert was a good endeavour and a different way of accessing information for the students.
My next post will detail the Mystery Skype my ENG3U1 class participated in; it was a very different beast than this one.