For my lesson last week, I had my kindergarten students use ePals to email another kindergarten class in another country.  We began by researching in a whole group different countries and learning a little bit about them.  On the PBS site, there are several fun, engaging, age appropriate games that teach simple facts about other cultures in different countries.  The class then chose a country to begin communicating and collaborating with via email.  We exchanged three pieces of information with our Pen Pal kindergarten class: favorite names in the country, favorite games of the class', and typical weather.  The kids worked in small groups using Kid Pix or poster board to create a poster reflecting what they learned through their research about the USA first.  Then, after collaborating with our Pen Pal class, we again used hands-on ways to demonstrate our new-found knowledge.   Communicating and collaborating with children from another part of the world makes this a meaningful global lesson.

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That sounds like a great way to incorporate global awareness into a classroom of young learners. At first, I struggled with this activity because I thought the different websites were a little advanced for my fourth graders and I was unsure how to incorporate the pen pals activity. I like how you are using it as a tool for learning about each other's culture as a basis for collaboration.



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