- technical hurdles :
different technical capacities ( video conferencing is not as widespread in French schools as it is in English ones)
regular problems with computer hardware, Internet Access, not to mention simple problems with the post, lost packages.
technical details still need to be cleared up. Yet, the need to communicate abroad can boost up equipment too.
The concept of the " project":
- general agreement on the fact that private/individual letters are irrelevant as they cannot be used in the classroom and create division rather than cooperation
though: having a collective E-mail address is fine
- general consensus on the fact that there must be a project to work on as a group
scale of the project : it is generally admitted that a small project involving just one class is the best course
- project contents : on towns, festivals, historical events, debates about the monarchy, music, films, sciences, geography, the environment.
All topics enabling comparisons within a concrete and realistic field of research
Common topics are fruitful too as they integrate exchange of material but also the dimension of time and research
Lists of topics established right from the beginning help teachers to pair the students according to their interests ( and can be linked on the French side with TPE or IDD)
Topics should not be imposed on students but chosen by them ( psychological factor)
- material is regularly exchanged according to a strict agenda ( which must be realistic too).
A lot of information is exchanged about cultural stereotypes and helps them move towards a better understanding of each other
- videos : filmed lessons that can be used as teaching material
- various brochures, leaflets.
- photos of students ( digital photos as attachments), places.
- teachers' E mail correspondence to build the project
- teacher's material
- teachers' assessment of their students' expectations or assessment, sometimes difficulties in communicating or disappointment.
This can be used as a means to regulate the partnership as far as human relationships are concerned
- meeting of teachers has started with a few schools : preparatory visits of the coordinators, planning, scheduling, exchanging ideas, meeting the partner to increase mutual understanding