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Global Skype-a-Thon kicks off today

skype-a-thonNew Zealand will be the first country in the world today to kick-off the global Microsoft Skype-a-Thon, a 48-hour event aimed at connecting classrooms around the world to showcase how technology can be used to enhance the learning experience.

At 1.00pm, New Zealand time, Microsoft’s Vice President for Worldwide Education, Anthony Salcito, will begin the marathon Skype session with a 30-minute video call to the Year 7 and 8 students at Opaheke School in Papakura to hear more about a project they are working on about Antarctica. He will then share the learnings from the Kiwi students with the rest of the world as he calls around 30 other classrooms in countries across the world, ultimately travelling more than a million virtual miles over the two-day event.

In his role leading the worldwide execution of Microsoft’s vision for education, Anthony Salcito works to help empower educators and inspire students, with the aim to transform the way they learn with the support of the best technology to help build critical skills for the modern, global workplace. He authors Daily Edventures (dailyedventures.com), which highlights the inspiring stories of educators, students, education thought leaders and school leaders from around the world.

Nikkie Laing, Associate Principal of e-Learning and Innovation and a Microsoft Expert Educator at Opaheke School, says she is excited about the opportunities that using Skype in the classroom can present for students to enhance their educational experience.

“The students are looking forward to sharing with Anthony what they learned from a visit we had from a scientist last week, who spoke about her work in Antarctica, and how they will be able to have further lessons with her via Skype as she continues her work from the ice over the next few months.”

Anne Taylor, Schools & Academic Programs Manager for Microsoft New Zealand, says the Skype-a-thon is a unique opportunity for New Zealand schools to share their Kiwi educational experience with the world.

“Microsoft’s mission is to empower every student and teacher on the planet to achieve more. The Skype-a-thon is a perfect example of this, and will recognise those schools and educators who are taking innovative approaches to learning in the classroom.”

For more information about the global Skype-a-Thon visit skypeathon.com

 

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