With all that said, we are now looking at ways that we might use this video conference equipment in other ways. This week, when we realized that we had 14 teachers who needed a training for ELL being offered by the Schultz Center, we asked about having it video conferenced to our school, if we were willing to provide the facilitators at our end. Although the Schultz Center trainers doing this particular training had never video conferenced, they were willing to give it a try and the session did take place very successfully. It certainly was a perk for our teachers not to have to travel for the training. You have to have a very forward-thinking and flexible administrator to put that together so easily!
We have mostly used this equipment for professional development and have only begun to look at possibilities for instruction. Melanie Holtsman collaborated with the museum last year video streaming a live lesson for her gifted students. Now we are looking at other places that might have the equipment so that we could do virtual field trips. How cool would that be! For instance, maybe first grade could visit the great barrier reef as they continue their study of Australia. Of course, it would mean having the kids come to school in the middle of the night for the experience because of the time differences, but that in and of itself might be lots of FUN!