Flying the flag for VOTW.
I’ve mentioned before the Voices of the World project, initiated by
Sharon Tonner creating links around the world using our voices / sound rather than solely as a way of written word. It’s a genius project as it offers-
- a monthly task – short sharp bursts are great for keeping up interest , and also work well for me as the whole school want to be involved so I can rotate classes to lead
- a different tool each month – so far – Voki, Animoto, One True Media and Voicethread (not to mention using Audacity and Flickr to gather and create things!) so we’re introducing new ideas and techniques into the classroom – and they’re free!
- links with classes across the globe – Greece, Thailand, Scotland, Wales, France, Germany, Australia, USA… the list goes on.
- the opportunity for my pupils to ‘be’ Spanish. I teach them Spanish and, in the absence of a Spanish school, and because I have to be different, Whitehouse Common are doing their tasks in Spanish (the other schools are doing the tasks in their own language)
This month, the task is on Voicethread and is on the theme of customs. It’s a two part task – Sharon has selected some slides featuring fruit, clothes, musical instruments etc and each school is going to record the name of each fruit, instrument and so on in their own language. Then each school is going to create their own Voicethread based on their country – the food, costume, sport that most represents it.
I must admit, with January half gone, we haven’t started yet. There are many reasons but one is the issue of our icon.
We need to create an icon to represent our school on Voicethread, and Sharon asked that it be the flag of our country. Problem – we are in England, but our words will be in Spanish so which flag do we use? Sharon and I exchanged e-mails on the subject and concluded that it needed to be a hybrid! So, we were about to head off to Paint to redesign the flag when i discovered a very timely post from Langwitches, Silvia Tolisano, on a tool she had discovered on Twitter via Karen Bosch called We are multicolored.
This tool allows you to make a hybrid flag, based on three questions –
Where is your home?
What other country has affected you?
Where have you dreamed of going?
I like this one with the English bit of the Union flag at the front – but does the St George’s cross get a bit lost?
And this one is for our Euro08 project – we’ve drawn Sweden!
It’s a tool I wish I’d discovered yesterday when I was teaching Year6 RE about signs of belonging and identity – but we’ll be having a go next week for sure (they’ll be thrilled – tweeting on Twitter with Ewan McIntosh last week, designing flags next week – what will it be next?)
And I also think it’ll be a great new tool to add a new dimension to European Day of Languages next September – we’ve discovered the languages spoken by our school community – wouldn’t it be great to have a display of the 480+ hybrid flags of the pupils? And we thought last year was brilliant!
Need a rest before my brain overheats….