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AP Geography Students "Hangout" with Teachers in Saudi Arabia and Kuwait



For those who haven’t heard, fifteen classrooms, from Enumclaw Middle, Thunder Mountain, and Enumclaw High School, will be the first classroom environments to house classroom sets of Chromebook laptop computers, and these classrooms are called “Connected Classrooms”. (For more information about Chromebooks and Google Apps for Education, visit our new Google Site, https://sites.google.com/a/enumclaw.wednet.edu/technology_resources/chromebooks.)

High school teacher Steve Murphy is one of our “Connected Classroom” teachers, and his AP Geography students had the exciting opportunity on Thursday, January 14 to use Google Docs and Google Hangout to connect with two American teachers living in Kuwait and one living in Saudi Arabia. These students are studying the current conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran, and this experience brought relevancy and enriched their learning. Students asked questions real-time, discussing the conflict from their perspectives. (In case you aren’t familiar with Google Hangout, it is a video and audio calling app similar to Skype, made available to our teachers to enhance their lessons.)

Prior to connecting to these teachers, the students broke into three groups, U.S., Iran and Saudi Arabia researching the conflict from various media perspectives, collaborating, answering questions from Mr. Murphy, discovering new questions and entering their responses onto a shared Google Doc via their laptops.

An extra treat for the class was a visit from Mr. Jeff Utecht; Google Apps for Education and Chromebook consultant who provided tips for the students to enhance their Google searches, and connected the students to these teachers oversees using Google Hangout.

This is just one example of many to come showing our students enriching their learning by using Google Apps for Education.