Expand your students’ horizons with global collaboration

Kristen PainoCase study, Collaboration, Education

Book Creator is a fantastic tool to get schools across the world collaborating on projects.

The Global Book series

Global collaboration is an integral part of the Avenues curriculum, so I am always connecting our teachers and students with other classrooms around the world. The Global Book Series includes books that have been authored by educators and students from around the world. So far, we have published a total of three ebooks to the iBooks Store (with one more on the way).

Pre-school: A Global iBook

The first book, A Global iBook was created by/for our pre-school students to help them share what they learned about our location in NYC, as well as learn about different locations around the world.

One of our former technology integrators, Meg Wilson first came up with the idea of using Book Creator to connect and collaborate with other educators and students. After the success of the first book, I was inspired to implement the idea of creating global books with our lower school students. This in turn, began the global book series.

Read more: ‘Going global with Book Creator‘ by Meg Wilson

1st Grade: Schools Around the World

The second book: Schools Around The World was created by/for our first graders so that they could compare their school to other schools around the world.

Within this unit of study, the first graders discovered that everyone is at school to grow and learn, that it takes many people to help a school function, and that collaboration and cooperation are beneficial in a school environment.

In learning about their own school, the students wondered about other schools and classrooms around the world. So I began looking for other classroom collaborators to help us create a book about schools around the world.

Page from 'Schools Around the World'

Using Twitter, I found educators from Nevada, Australia, New York, Venezuela, London, Japan, Missouri, Colorado, Nebraska and Connecticut to help contribute to the global book.

Using the Book Creator app, educators and students submitted pages about their school. The pages included information about the school’s location, school building, classes, transportation and food. Many of the pages included various forms of multimedia, including video and audio.

2nd Grade: Shelters Around the World

The third book: Shelters Around The World was created by/for our second graders to help with their research on what different shelters look like in other parts of the world.

Our students learned that shelters are designed and constructed to meet environmental and cultural needs and that humans need shelter for protection from the environment. They began to understand why shelters look different around the world and wondered what homes were like in other places. So I found other classroom collaborators to help us create a book on shelters around the world.

Page from 'Shelters Around the World'

As with the previous book, I used Twitter to find educators from Ireland, China, Wisconsin, England, Texas, Illinois, United Kingdom, Indiana, New Jersey, Russia and Texas to help contribute.

Again, using the Book Creator App, educators and students submitted pages about shelters in their areas. The pages included information about their location, weather data, photos of shelters and descriptions of building materials.

How to combine books in Book Creator

By creating these global books, we wanted to demonstrate how classrooms around the world could come together to publish something unique and creative while learning from each other at the same time.

The global books were a valuable resource and provided an authentic learning experience for the students. The Book Creator app helps inspire creativity and collaborative learning in teachers and students everywhere.

Kristen Paino is a Technology Integrator at Avenues: The World School, New York. She focuses on integrating technology into the curriculum so that students and teachers create, collaborate, investigate, and connect. Kristen is also a Book Creator Ambassador.

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