In a two week trip to Arusha with Epic Change AJ and I focused on introducing a class of fifth graders to new media to connect them with people around the world. We also wanted to give them a place to share their thoughts and ideas so we focused on teaching the kids how to use tumblr and twitter. On tumblr the students blogged and twitter they connected with people around the world.
We started the week by teaching the kids about twitter and introduced the concpet by doing activities that illustrated twitter offline. Lesson each kids was given a 3×5 card where they drew their avatar and answered a question, we then taped these on the wall from the ceiling to the floor in a straight line. Then we taught the kids about mentions by going out in the field and they hand delivered mentions to each other on 3×5 cards, you can watch the video here.
Before we left for Tanzania we paired each student with a twitter friend at home. So that when they hopped on twitter for the first time they had someone to talk to. This really was invaluable because the students were able to understand the concept of twitter and being able to connect with anyone around the world. You can see some of the conversations below.
Next we moved on to teaching the kids about blogging on tumblr. I started with asking key questions and the kids answered them in blog form. What are you thankful for? What would you like to be when you grow up? What did you do last weekend? We did not spend as much time as I would have liked on blogging, but the kids were able to understand the idea and key concepts and hopefully the teachers will be able to carry the blogs forward (although this will require more teacher training).