“E-C Collaboration” with Shenyang, China – Post 3

The last few weeks have been a busy one for the ‘E-C collaboration’ team and things have really progressed well.
All the team have been working hard with our three year 7 groups, 7X1, 7X3 and 7Y3 and they have nearly completed their PowerPoint presentations ready for the Chinese students.  We had anticipated the year 7 groups to be finished together but we had anticipated that some might be finished before others! However the team have overcame these problems by creating more ways for the year 7s to add to their slides.  In addition to this, Mark and Connor have been experimenting with sound, and we not only have a way for them to record English for the Chinese to listen to but they have created a tutorial to teach them how to do it.

We have managed to get new members onto Fronter – our 62 Chinese Pen Pals! April sent Andy a list of names and classes of the Chinese students and the group wasted little time and assigned the Lukes to get them onto Fronter. Thanks to the ICT technicians (and a little help from our Project sponsor, Mr Sharples!) they now all have a log in to Fronter.

The next thing our project manager wanted to do was to pair the Chinese students up with our year 7 groups.  With a bit of to-ing and throw-ing we cracked it. The class 7Y3 has 19 students which can be matched with the classes 3 and 7 in China; 7X3 has 21 who match with classes 4, 5 and 6. Leaving 7Y3 with classes 1, 2 and 8 with the 22 students they need.

Ellie and Megan have spent time making the forums for the online collaboration, with a forum for each of the collaborative groups described earlier and a tutorial in simple but brilliant detail. Speaking of tutorials, Jess created one after creating 6 new hand in folders for our year 7s and Chinese to hand in their completed PowerPoints, which as usual from Jess is perfect.

The team have also come up with their key tasks for the project which was derived from our ‘SMART’ objectives: Specific, Measurable, Agreed Upon, Realistic and Time-Bound. This was dependent on us creating our final agreed success criteria. “To allow all LLS Year 7 students to collaborate successfully with year 7 Chinese students using a range of digital tools during the Autumn term 2011”. To help us with our Chinese knowledge and understanding and with thanks to our project sponsor we have new personnel to consider in our project. Mr Josh Wong is a lawyer who regularly visits China and he will be taking part in the Forums with the Year 7s along with Miss Wu and Miss Mark.  This will help us a great deal as we have 3 people to help us with language, affairs, rules and other issues we may face in the future. As all projects go it hasn’t been all plain sailing, but we responded quickly to problems.  We have seen the rejection of Skype from the idea list as Emma and Becky have found it to not be feasible from LLS school and the Chinese firewalls. We also had to wait a while for our Chinese students to get onto Fronter because of matters which we could not control which we overcame thanks to our project manager.  We manage all of our meetings with Andy chairing and the rest of us taking turns with taking the minutes.  One of them was even without our Project Sponsor as he was involed with learning walks elsewhere in school.  We also found that tasks were not being ticked off on Zoho and so had to make sure that everyone was doing that.
The future is looking good for the ‘E-C Collaboration’ team. With Saskia Liaising with our client, Andy doing a brilliant job as Project Manager, tasks being done on time, effective communication and using suitable project software we hope to continue to do well in the weeks to come and succeed with the Year 7s collaborating successfully with their Chinese counterparts.

By Luke Kelly / Update 24th November