Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Global Conversations

One of my side-projects this semester has been trying to establish a partnership bewteen Brediceanu (my high school here) and Haddam-Killingworth High School (the school from my hometown in Connecticut).

We got off to a somewhat slow start, but now things seem to be under way. I've got a group of 8 students from the 9th and 10th grades who have been helping to make it all happen. Here's our group:

From left to right: Loli, Denis, Claudia, me, Cristiana, Doris, Lorena, and at the bottom are Cristian and Bogdan

We're collaborating with a group of 9 kids from Haddam-Killingworth's International Culture Club (ICC). Our first formal correspondence was to exchange powerpoint presentations, followed by email discussions between the kids on both sides (using the website

My kids used their presentations as a means to briefly introduce the Americans to Romania. They decided to split into two teams and do seperate powerpoints-- one team made a presentation on our local region, Banat, and the other made theirs about Maramures. The idea behind doing two presentations was to illustrate regional differences within Romania. The goal for both presentations was to represent the regions in terms of the 5 senses (sight, smell, sound, taste and touch). The kids really got into it and were quite creative in thinking up objects, landmarks, and symbols that are representative of Banat and Maramures, respectively. They were also extremely excited to receive the presentation made by the American kids (which included information about their school schedule, shad fishing, pancakes with syrup, and several other things my kids found interesting or unusual).

So far the exchanges seem to be going well, but the school year is just about over now. I hope that the kids will continue to correspond next year, even after I'm gone. Luckily, Mihaela, one of my English-teaching colleagues has offered to coordinate the effort when school resumes.

Anyway, I thought perhaps you'd like to see the presentations my kids made. Click on the slide shows to start them. The music originally incorporated into the presentations is included below the slides.

Music typical of Banat, performed by Nicoleta Voica:

"Ana Lugojana," a piece composed by Ion Vidu:

A traditional melody from Maramures:


Anonymous said...

absolutely FANTASTIC!!! kudos to the teacher and especially, the students!


Jack Nork said...

Mike, your students did fantastic work! Did the HK kids do PowerPoints too? I would be interested in seeing how they describe Connecticut

Grandpa said...

I think everyone would be interested to see the response from the United States to the great presentations your students made. It looked like they enjoyed this assignment. Now the rest of us get to enjoy it too.

Anonymous said...

how great! can't wait to hang out with you soon!

Anonymous said...

^ says kellan

Erin said...

you've disappeared! what have you been up to?