HOW GLOBAL CONNECTIONS CULTIVATE COMMUNICATION SKILLS..
I was participating in a panel as a speaker for an edcamp in Pennsylvania and while we were talking about the benefits of Global Projects and learning I realised that except for meeting new people and learning about new cultures etc, kids also cultivate their communication (social) skills through every interaction with other classes around the world.
Every connection teaches them how to introduce theirselves. There are specific steps that people usually follow when they introduce themselves to others. When people are meeting for the first time, it’s polite to tell each other their names.
They also learn how to be respectful. They learn how to listen to others, use kind words for their new friends or ask for permission.
Plus they learn how to be responsible; how to follow directions and how to be prepared to ask or answer a question.
Moreover, they learn how to respond to others and their vocabulary is enriched. So istead of having them sitting and smiling in front of the camera and just saying yes, no or nodding their head, global connection is your chance to teach your students new ways of responding like "wow", "thanks for sharing", "great information".
But except for all the aforementioned verbal communication skills, students also acquire lots of non-verbal skills which are very important on communicating their emotions. Students through global connections learn about the importance of body language which consists of gestures, eye contact, posture, facial expressions and even physical appearance. Moreover they learn about the way children comminicate orally, except for the actual words. Students learn about the importance of voice tone, voice volume, accent and they realise that their behaviour sends a visual message to other students or adults.
Finally, global connections teach students how to to express and control their feelings and this will not only help them have immediate social approval by their peers, but will also help them develop an emotional foundation that will make them more confident and successful as teens, and even as adults
It is quite obvious that Global Collaboration can definitely teach kids lots of social skills and there is no question that children with better social skills have a significant advantage in life.They not only experience the rewards of positive relationships, but they do better in school, have a better self-image, and are much more resilient as they face life’s challenges.