Are you ready for PenPal-A-Palooza 2019? Join our biggest PenPal exchange of the year for a chance to win cool prizes, including a free school license! We’re challenging students around the world to write to as many PenPals as possible to see which school can send the most messages by the end of February. It’s easy to join- simply sign up and explore one of our many topics by the end of February to participate!
PenPal-A-Palooza is a great opportunity to discover the benefits of global project based learning. Today’s PenPal Stars exemplify the power of project based learning. Meet Gerda, Karolina, Rokas, Karolis, and Leva from Lithuania who recently explored the popular topic World Explorer!
Political leaders across the USA are being sworn into office this month. As elected officials, they’ll help make decisions that affect towns, cities, and states across the USA. Young people have a lot of opinions and ideas about the issues affecting their futures. That’s why so many students are exploring American Perspectives, a project based learning unit that allows students to form and share opinions about some of today’s most important issues such as education, health care, the economy, energy, immigration. Students have access to information about a variety of political perspectives through guiding questions, videos, texts, and images.
This week, we are excited to highlight a 5th grade class from Fox Meadow Elementary School in New York, USA as our PenPal Stars!
Join more than 1,100 students as they participate in Holidays & Festivals of the World this month! Many countries are getting ready to celebrate holidays such as Christmas, New Years, and Día de los Reyes Magos and students are excited to share their holiday traditions! Use this excitement to motivate students advance their writing skills and share their culture and traditions with our collaborative learning community.
Students love to read the comments that their PenPals leave on their writing, but we know that students need support to leave critical, relevant, and helpful feedback. It’s time to take student writing to the next level with new peer assessment & badging!
Now, students have the opportunity to give and receive specific feedback from dozens of peers around the world.
The new peer assessment reviews are designed to help students improve their writing. Instead of simply upvoting a great response, now students can analyze why the response is great by giving reviews like Inspiring, Uses Facts, and Super Spelling. Students also earn badges based on the number of reviews they receive!
See how peer assessment can improve your students’ writing by enrolling in a PenPal Schools topic.
In November, students from around the world participated in a special photography contest to share photos of the people, places, and things they are grateful for. Students participated in the special PenPal Schools topic Giving Thanks Through Photography and submitted photos to the Showcase. The PenPal Schools team chose the 5 best student photos and shared them on social media for community voting.
Your votes have been counted, and we’re excited to announce that Lera from Ukraine is the winner! Congratulations, Lera! Check out her winning project:
In “Charting a Course for Success: America’s Strategy for STEM Education,” the Executive Office of the President of the United States states that “the pace of innovation is accelerating globally, and with it the competition for scientific technical talent.” The report lays out a strategic five-year plan to improve STEM education in the United States.
PenPal Schools connects students from 150 different countries, so we know that the emphasis on STEM is not only happening in American schools. Teachers around the world have been inundated with STEM projects, curriculum, and resources. STEM education and innovation is no longer limited to the borders of a nation. Technology allows us to connect and collaborate globally, so it’s critical that STEM education prepares students to be competitive in the global STEM workforce. Thanks to the internet, schools across the country and around the world have more access to STEM curriculum and resources than ever before.
For many of our readers, it’s almost holiday break! Parents, students, and teachers alike are counting down the days until vacation. However, how can you make the most of the time you have left?
Did you know that one in five jobs are connected to international trade? Our world is becoming more interconnected every day, highlighting the need to help our students develop as globally competent citizens that can successfully work with people around the world. This is highlighted by the UN’s fourth sustainable development goal (SDG), which calls for “inclusive and equitable quality education that promotes lifetime learning opportunities for all”. One way that the UN will track this success is by monitoring schools’ use of global citizenship education.
There are more than 1.5 billion English Language Learners in the world today. Are you or your students included in this statistic? PenPal Schools helps ESL students develop essential reading and writing skills through global project based learning.
Global communication is a perfect way for our students to study English as a foreign language and to present their own culture, customs and traditions to their new friends. What is more, they can improve the usage of ICT.
From 1995 to 2014, the fastest growing population of American children were first- and second- generation immigrants, increasing by 51 percent. In total, one in four children are first- and second- generation immigrants!
Many teachers struggle with how to bring up immigration with their students in a compassionate, productive way. Even the word immigration has strong emotional connotations for some students and can cause classroom conflict. So, what is the solution? Today’s PenPal Star from the USA provides an example of the kind of critical conversations your students can have about immigration through global project-based learning!