Skype Night


Posted by Miss Crowther | Posted in Collaboration, Literacy, Skype | Posted on April 3, 2014

Guest post by Eve and Chelsea

On Friday 29th of March, 16 Upper Plenty P.S students weren’t doing an ordinary 8:00pm thing. Usually, we would be watching TV or doing after school sports like basketball. Instead, we were getting ready to Skype six classes around the world. The reason for this was that most of the classes were our blogging buddies, but the time differences didn’t match ours, so therefore, we couldn’t Skype them during UPPS school hours. It would only be possible for us or them, to sleep over at school.  So that’s what 16 students, from 5/6 Team did, including us, did!

The first Skype of the sleepover was at 8:15pm after our UPPS Market Night. It was a mystery Skype, so we had no idea who they were or where they were in the world. Here are some clues to help you guess where they were:

  1. They’re in the Northern Hemisphere
  2. They are in Europe
  3. The country had a disaster involving potatoes between 1845 – 1852
  4. Their country starts with an ‘I’
  5. Their town is well known and starts with a ‘D’
  6. Their town is the name of a clothing brand

We won’t tell you the answer here, but you can watch the clip in this post to see if you are correct!

We found out the Mystery Class were a whole school of boys!

After finishing the Mystery Skype we walked over with our bedding to the Central Learning Space to get ready for a Skype with Tanzania in Africa. There were a few technical difficulties, so we couldn’t see them. But, their teacher sent us a photo of them during the Skype. What was weird was that they were reading the same class novel as us, Kensuke’s Kingdom by Michael Morpurgo. It was a shock and they are three chapters behind us. Of all the books in the world, both our teachers chose to read Kensuke’s Kingdom!

We found out that:

  • They’re a Grade 5 Class
  • They have no class pet because they can’t even look after a plant!
  • There are 18 students in their class
  • They love reading Percy Jackson books (also a movie)
  • It was 1:33pm there and 9:33pm in Victoria
  • Loom Bands are popular too (their bracelets made with rubber bands)
  • They start school at 7.10 am and finish at 1.45 pm.

It was fun Skyping with them apart from not being able to see them, we hope the connection will be better next time!

At 9:15 pm, we had a chat with our old friends from Middleham, North Yorkshire; Class 2 and Mrs Monaghan. First, we taught them how to play, You can come to my party if…. Here are the rules to help you understand how to play and maybe teach someone else.

1. Choose a ‘rule’ for items that can be brought to a party. For example, the item must have double letters, the letter k or two vowels.

2. One class asks the other class ‘Can I please bring….’

3. Make a list of the items you can and can’t bring and see if you can work out the rule

We played a few games. The first one had to have double letters and Middleham’s rule was that the item had to have the letter ‘k’ somewhere in it.

Soon after, we had ANOTHER Skype at about 11:00pm with a school in Sweden. They each had an Apple computer to themselves and we were very jealous! There were lots of questions once everyone got into the groove. As their first language is Swedish, they did really well to understand and talk to us in English. It was really impressive!

We found out that:

  • They start school at 8am and finish at 2pm
  • 900 students go to their school
  • It snows every year in winter
  • They are learning about multiplication and division
  • They learn Swedish, English and when they are older, German
  • Their temperature was 10C on the day we spoke to them
  • Their favourite food is pancakes
  • They play football, ice hockey, dancing and golf

After talking to Sweden it was nearly midnight and time for bed. We climbed into our sleeping bags and swags and tried to get some rest. Miss Crowther and Mrs Placek set the alarm for 1:45am.

When the alarm went off some people stayed asleep. Most people woke up in time to talk to Mrs Todd and the Roadrunners in North Carolina, USA. Mrs Todd has Skyped a lot but it was the second graders first time. We asked them some questions and they asked us some.

We found out that:

  • There are 20 children in each second grade class
  • At recess they play on the rock wall, slides and monkey bars
  • They like to play soccer, tag, hide and seek, basketball, baseball and football
  • Their weather was sunny but they were getting some rain later
  • They are not allowed to go outside at play time if it gets too hot or cold
  • They have a cafeteria
  • It was 10:45am their time on Friday morning and 1:45am our time on Saturday morning

We climbed back into bed for a few more hours sleep.  When the alarm went off at 6am we were feeling pretty tired. Some people didn’t get out of their sleeping bags for our Skype with Mrs Yollis. Instead, they shuffled their way over to the computer and Skyped in their sleeping bags! We hadn’t ever talked to Mrs Yollis before (apart from a five minute test call one morning) but we already knew her from our Mystery Number Twitter project. It was great to finally get to talk to her and her class properly.

Mrs Yollis’ class had prepared answers to some questions Miss Crowther had sent them earlier and this is what we learnt:

  • There are 600 students at the school
  • We were speaking to third graders who were 8 and 9 years old
  • They use the word ‘split’ to describe what we call composite classes
  • They call a car park and parking lot
  • They are reading ‘The One and Only Ivan’ as their class novel
  • They start school at 8:15am and finish at 2:20pm on Mondays, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Fridays
  • On Wednesdays they have banking day at finish at 12:30pm
  • In maths they are learning about area, perimeter and volume
  • They like blogging, reading, Minecraft and hiking
  • It was 17C on the day we spoke to them and there was no wind

We learnt some other things too:

  • They use the word cafeteria to describe what we call a canteen
  • They use the word canteen to describe a water bottle


Watch the slideshow below to see what we did during Skype Night.


We all really enjoyed Skype Night. Thank you to the classes that Skyped with us. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did!


What country would you like to Skype with? Why?



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