Mobile and Ubiquitous -
The Flat Classroom™ Project is a global collaborative project that joins together middle and senior high school students. This project is part of the emerging trend in internationally-aware schools to embrace a holistic and constructivist educational approach to work collaboratively with others around the world in order to create students who are competitive and globally-minded. The project was co-founded by Vicki Davis (Westwood Schools, USA) and Julie Lindsay (Beijing (BISS) International School, China) in 2006 when Julie (then in Bangladesh) and Vicki joined their classrooms together for the first time to study and emulate the emerging flattened learning environment.
One of the main goals of the project is to 'flatten' or lower the classroom walls so that instead of each class working isolated and alone, 2 or more classes are joined virtually to become one large classroom. This is done through the Internet using Web 2.0 tools such as Wikispaces and Ning. The Project uses Web 2.0 tools to make communication and interaction between students, teachers, expert advisers, class sounding boards and other participants easier. The topics studied and discussed are real-world scenarios.
Embedding social learning into the mainstream curriculum: the pedagogy of the Flat Classroom™
The use of social networking technologies is pedagogically relevant. Combined with a holistic and multicultural approach the walls of a classroom can be broken down.Flat Classroom Project has reinforced the approach that learning takes place in many different ways, times and places. It also shows us that the research that emphasizes the effectiveness of cooperative learning, genuine assessment, and project-based learning can occur when students are literally on opposite sides of the globe. The benefits of such a project are far-reaching. Social learning theory and research has shown us that sociability of online learning combined with interaction can help promote understanding.
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