Paul W. Hankins’s Skype
in the classroom moment
Our very first Skype call with an author was in the fall of 2009 with Garth Stein, the author of The Art of Racing in the Rain. We all waited in anticipation to see how that first visit would go. An hour later, our students had enjoyed their first interaction with a published author. In the course of that year, we would enjoy encounters with Young Adult authors Jennifer Brown, Jon Skovron, and Tom Angleberger.
We've continued to use Skype to interact with these Young Adult authors since.
In 2012, while participating in World Read Aloud Day, I made contact with a community of poets, illustrators, middle grade and young adult authors so that every one of my six classes could enjoy an interaction with at least two authors via Skype.
We kept Skype pretty busy that day and the next day as we spoke with a total of 16 (yes. . .that number is correct-16) authors and never dropped a connection once. It was truly magical to watch my students interact with authors like Gae Polisner, David Macinnis Gill, Charles Benoit, Geoff Herbach, Ellen Hopkins, and and a host of other authors, illustrators and poets.
This year, we have continued to use Skype in order to invite Gae Polisner back to speak with our Reading Club about their having read The Pull of Gravity. Furthermore, we used Skype to interact with Barry Lane about his book, Writing as a Road to Self-Discovery with our AP English Language and Composition students.
We are proud to have so many of these authors become our friends as a part of our extended Skype family. We have had so much fun bringing these authors and our readers together.
As a part of our SKYPE story, I wanted to include some links to articles that we have written and have been written about our experiences with SKYPE IN THE CLASSROOM.
Here is an article ("An Author in Every Classroom) written by Children's Author, Kate Messner that was published in the School Library Journal about our experiences in using SKYPE IN THE CLASSROOM:
Here is an article from our own blog, THESE 4 Corners, about using SKYPE IN THE CLASSROOM called "When It Comes to SKYPE, Believe the Hype: