Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Let the blogs begin...

September 24, 2008

Tyrone, The kids really enjoyed the chat today. I don't know what our problem was with the webcam. Maybe we will get it right next week.
The students not talking to you went into the blogs. It took a while because each one had to set up a blog to make comments to yours. That may be the problem you encountered with Taking It Global. This one works fine.
I hope your students enjoy looking at the comments on each of their blogs. I tried to make sure everyone had a response. I will have more students responding tomorrow. ---Cathy

September 23, 2008

Tyrone, We will call at 10:30 your time. Your blog is wonderful. I did not get your e-mail until afternoon. My laptop crashed and I am afraid that I have lost all my e-mail addresses and downloads. Unfortunately, I did not back up all of my work to a flash drive. I always remind the kids to do it, and then I didn't. Not a good example, I'm afraid. Some students will go on your blog while others talk tomorrow. We look forward to it. ---Cathy

September 22, 2008

Cathy, I am waiting for our Wednesday class together. I would like your students to have a look and make comments in our blog whose address is: There your students will be able to know more about mine and see their photos. Tomorrow I’ll put the data about Tuesday students. Yours could read about Mon, Tue, and Wed students but focusing on the last ones, as they are going to talk to them. Asking my students about their lives, something has called my attention: more than 90% of them don’t live with their parents. They live either with their mother, grandma or their father...It would be a good question to discuss with your students: do they live with their parents? How many of them just live with their mother or father? Violence and drug trafficking are something my students face in their
communities..and I know yours do also. We could think of a manner to make them see that no matter how far they are they have lots of things
in common, besides belonging to the same ethnic group in general...See you on Wednesday. God bless us all!!! ---Tyrone

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Enough introductions...

Re: Re: Blog
Some of my students have already started to blog. I will tell them to do pictures too.

You are right. It is time to start exchanging ideas about our countries and our cultures.

Thanks for working with us this way. I believe the students will learn so much from it. We will be putting information on the bulletin boards in the hall, so other classes will know what we are doing.

Have a good day!

Wednesday, September 17, 2008 9:05 PM
Subject: Re: Blog

Hi Cathy!!!
This morning was so good, wasn't it ? My students liked it a lot!!! and me too! Well, I've seen that my ideas have been in line with yours!! In fact, I've been putting my students to write small texts about them for two classes - even today I started my class doing this again as what we had written last weekend was immediately lost after the the computers were turned off! (The tech man has installed a program,as they usually do in lan houses, that deletes everything that was saved before. Today they wrote a text about themselves and as I tried to put some photos of them in the blog, the computer restarted; and again what they had written was lost!! But it doesn't matter! I will suggest to the tech guy deleting such a program; in case it's not possible I will save students data in my e-mail or via pen drive and I'm gonna use such data afterward!

But next week your students will be able to know more about mine!! See you on Monday morning and/or Wednesday morning!!
PS: When classes finished today I felt very happy!! I suggest you to make a brainstorming activity with your students about Brazil, like: what do you know or have heard of Brazil? What comes to your mind when you think about Brazil? Next class we could discuss about their impressions - either negative or positive-, with my students, ok?

Cathy to Tyrone: September 17 am
What fun this morning! I don't think there was any problem because of age differences. You have some "fresh" little guys. :-) Have them go to Taking It Global and set up an account or have them go in under your name and write a comment introducing themselves. Stuff like My name is ..., I like to eat..., my favorite musician, rapper is....
It only needs to be a couple of sentences. Then they have a live audience to comment back.

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Problems with SKYPE...

September 11, 2008

I sent e-mail to Tyrone.

"Tyrone, We were very excited. We actually saw you briefly at the very first and we saw the children walking around in your classroom. Then we lost you. I was trying to demonstrate Skype to other teachers Tuesday afternoon and as I tried to open it, it updated and looked different and it wouldn't work right. So I know how frustrating it can be. There is a way to access the sound and increase it -- I'm not sure I can find it again.

Monday morning would be good to try again. I hope to have a good session. Then we will invite the third graders from our school and my seniors will help them to talk with your children. That way the 12th graders will be teaching them how to use the technology.

I like the analogy to "the knife and the cheese." You are right, we will stay with it until it works!


Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Forward ho...

September 10, 2008
So we tried to meet using SKYPE -- Conversation took place, with video but no audio -- and I have no idea why. Must be what the guy was talking about at NECC. Hmmm...maybe I'd better look back at those notes. Which I did...and yes, he talked about it, but I still have no clue...maybe they will have a better idea in Brazil.

From Tyrone, the eternal optimist:

"It was very good to see you today too. Unfortunately, we were able to see you and listen to you but we noticed you couldn't! I hope this problem is solved soon! And of course, it will!!! I had a meeting with the technician computer man last Thursday. And we tested the Skype and everything was ok, but today I couldn't work things out by myself so that we could have a chat. But as we say here in Brazil: " We are with the knife and the cheese in our hand", in other words, we have everything now, so nothing will make us giving up dreaming! Let's see whether it will be possible another meeting next week on Monday morning or Wednesday morning. Please tell me if these shifts are ok."

Friday, September 5, 2008

Meanwhile at Lovejoy...

September, 2008
The Lovejoy seniors started by anticipating problems they might encounter and programs that they could use.

They downloaded SKYPE and Before You Know It - Portuguese - Brazil (

They downloaded Google Earth and used Google Maps to look at Escola Parque. This was exciting as they also looked for their own school and homes.

They found websites where they could practice translating. (; I have since been told that Bing Translator is also good ( They discussed the problems that come from translation sites. Eventually, they would use these as they participated in blogs and threaded discussions by putting their work in both languages. The brunt of the translation problems fell on Tyrone in Brasil...

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Meet the students...

2 September 2008 - Labor Day - USA

So I have met the kids -- 3rd graders. How are we going to make this work? The 12th graders will be so bored they will do something stupid to embarrass me -- don't know if we should be doing this -- this will be the first impression these kids and this teacher will have of the United States. So I will write Tyrone:

"It was fun to talk to you and your kids on Monday.

Do you teach any high school classes? If so, I would like to have my kids blog with them also.

Have a good day!"

And his reply:
" I teach high school classes but unfortunately I do so in another school in which computers are not available. At Parque School, my students are those ones you saw on Monday. I'll ask the principal to teach high school students next year or teaching students of the community. If he accepts my suggestion, We'll be able to have a more meaningful conversation as students will be already or almost adults."

You will see as I go on that my fears were ungrounded. My seniors loved meeting the younger students, loved talking with Tyrone, and the girls were flattered by the admiring remarks of the 3rd graders.