How to Collaborate and Get in Touch with other Schools
North-South school linking, the development of a learning partnership between a school in the UK and one in the 'South', offers an excellent opportunity for pupils and teachers to bring global perspectives to life in a way no text book can hope to achieve.
Experience shows that an effective long term school partnership can:
- enable pupils to acquire new language, communication and presentation skills, attitudes and experience through direct contact with peers from different cultures
- enhance the content of classroom teaching in all subject areas with real topical content across the curriculum
- add value to the ethos of the participating schools and improve their performance across the board
- provide professional development for teachers.
- Teachers can also use joint projects to reinforce specific parts of the curriculum.
Having set up a link and agreed methods and frequency of communication, teachers should identify areas of overlap and topics of mutual interest in the curriculum, either by exchange of formal curricula or less formally, for example by letter or e-mail. Teachers can then devise a joint project with their partner school.
Many practical ideas for curriculum projects have been developed by schools with existing school links and can be accessed through projects such as Science Across the World
For further information on how to set up North-South school links or to find partner schools, look at the Global Gateway website.
Examples of activities to share in a link:
- Experiments to compare water or air quality in different locations using secondary sources such as the internet to go beyond the immediate neighbourhood.
- A debate between pupils in partner schools about an environmental issue such as the causes and impacts of recent climate change, deforestation or soil degradation.
- Using schools within the partnership as a means of collecting and comparing information about the contribution of renewable and non-renewable energy resources to power production in each country.
- Exchanges of information about the contrasting geology and rock types of their local regions, including how the geology influences the landscape.
- Pupils design, set up and manage school gardens, exploring with partner schools the effects of the different climates on the management, choice of plants, and use of the products.
The global dimension is relevant across the curriculum and teachers can coordinate their work with other subject areas.