Whether or not your students know it, they are exposed to fables, folktales, and myths all the time. A lot of the popular movies, TV, and music today tell the stories of ancient fables or famous folktales. It’s no wonder, then, that exploring these stories is a great way to learn about different communities around the world!
Today, we’re celebrating two PenPal Stars who are participating in Fables, Folktales, and Mythology: Nash from Thailand and Georgia from New Zealand!
It doesn’t take weeks of planning and dedicated class time to collaborate with peers around the world; you can get started with a project right now! We’ve taken care of the planning and the PenPals so you can bring the world into your classroom.
One of our most popular projects this month has been World Explorer, with students participating from 23 different countries across North America, South America, Europe, Africa, Asia, and Oceania! (Yes - that’s every inhabitable continent!)
From Canada to Chile, Spain to Ukraine, and South Africa to South Korea, PenPals have been discovering the culture, daily life, and histories of countries around the world. Today we’re celebrating Marija from Sweden as a PenPal Star for her recent work in World Explorer!
Every community around the world has music! Now, your students can curate a DJ set, report on a musical event, compose a song, or explore careers in music in our newest project: A World of Music.
How does immigration affect your community? Though politics and the news seem filled with nothing else, it can be difficult to see past the rhetoric to the people just beyond our doors. PenPal Schools Global Ambassador Anna Dudich and her students set out to change that by joining the PenPal Schools project Immigration in the 21st Century.
We met up with Anna to learn more about how she fostered global thinking and local action in this project based learning example from Ukraine.
Teachers have told us that they love the recent changes to PenPal Schools, from the new alignment to project-based learning to unlimited PenPals for every student.
There’s one change that makes PenPal Schools easier than ever for teachers: now, you can start PenPal Schools projects at any time! No waiting for start dates, no scheduling dilemmas, just global PenPals whenever you want them.
Now that you can start projects at any time, it’s easy to incorporate more global projects into your curriculum. Projects are also more flexible, so that you can complete them at your own pace. Some projects can last you a whole month, and others can be completed in a single class period! Simply sign up for a project, enroll your students, and begin. It’s that easy!
Project-based learning challenges students to create something original. There are so many digital tools available, it can be overwhelming to find the best resources for your class.
Since all PenPal Schools projects end with a design task, we asked educators in the PenPal Schools community which tools they love the most. Here are the top edtech tools that global educators recommend for PBL. Create videos, drawings, presentations, collages, quizzes, and more!
We made a bunch of changes to PenPal Schools over the summer, and perhaps the most exciting is how we connect students with PenPals!
In the past, the PenPal Schools team matched every student with 3-4 PenPals. Now, every lesson includes a forum where students can interact with thousands of peers from the PenPal Schools community!
All discussions are guided by thought-provoking questions and are easily monitored by teachers, so the forums stay safe and on-topic. The student forums have been active for months and we’ve already noticed a huge improvement in both the quality and quantity of student work!
This new method has another big benefit: no more waiting for PenPal Match Day! You can start any project at any time, and complete it at your own pace. To get started, just select a project!
Interested in implementing more project based learning in your class this year? PenPal Schools can help! Whether your students design robots with PenPals in Asia, write poetry with PenPals in Europe, or create environmental solutions with PenPals in Africa, we’re here to support you as you transition to global project based learning.
Here is your step-by-step PBL guide to getting started:
Schools around the world are shifting to project-based learning, which challenges students to create something original while collaborating and building knowledge through authentic learning tasks. But how do you make this kind of deep learning a reality in your classroom? There are so many moving parts to PBL that it can be difficult to know where to start.
We spoke to experts to learn more about the most common myths and mistakes that they see teachers make when getting started with project-based learning for the first time. Don’t let these throw you off course as you transition to PBL!