We need iPads to communicate internationally and build friendships with students from Ethiopia and other countries around the world.
About My Students
Bright, independent, resilient and resource-poor are descriptives of my middle school students with behavior challenges that are placed in a Categorical Emotionally Impaired classroom. It is housed within a K8 General Education building in Michigan with approximately 465 students.
Our K8 school is a Global Studies Academy theme school with an English as a Second Language (ESL) program. It integrates global studies and cultural arts within a rigorous curriculum. I was excited to see my students collaborate about our themed learning focus (Global Studies) and technology needs (iPads and apps) for our international iPad-iPal project.
This project promotes major Social Skills that are difficult for my students with behavior challenges to grasp: reciprocation, searching for and finding common bonds, mutual concern, empathy, and prospective-taking (thinking outside of oneself).
By connecting, communicating, and developing relationships with same-aged peers from Ethiopia and other countries around the world, my students will experience an inspiring cultural and language exchange (which is a symbol and process of the future) while mastering Social Skills.
"My project would give my classroom iPads to learn about my culture and other cultures too through Facetime and some apps.
I am Ethiopian and I wanted my friends to learn more about my culture without just reading about it or looking at internet pictures. Mexican and Chinese cultures are popular because of the language and food. People know a lot about them. They do not know a lot about Ethiopian culture.
In Their Own Words
My goal is for our class to use the iPads once a week or more to make friends with other Ethiopian middle schoolers and learn about my culture and other cultures later, too. This will help us to accept people who are different from us and from different parts of the world and even make friends with them.
We will use the iPads once or twice a week to talk to our iPals. The rest of the week the iPads would be used for researching the Ethiopian culture and other cultures around the world. There are also apps that would help us with our Reading and Math skills every day."
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