Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Skype in Your Letterhead?

This evening I received a quotation for purchasing an iPod for my music department. The vendor is a local Singaporean reseller. In the signature area, along with all the things I'm used to seeing, such as address, phone and FAX, this vendor also listed their Skype ID. I've never seen that before.

What does it say about their company? To me it suggests that they are small, and care about being accessible. I suspect they are forward thinking and open to new ideas.

Clarence was just writing about how the students in the International Teen Life project have moved beyond the formal communication channels set up by the teachers, such as video, email and Skype. They are now using IM, Email and wikis to chat, on their own time, with the other students in the project who are scattered across the globe.

If I were a classroom teacher, I might be thinking of putting my Skype ID on my syllabus next fall. I can see a few kids abusing it, but I can see more kids appreciating it.

It may work better for me as an international teacher. Before I went overseas, I didn't know many people who weren't living in my town, so I had no one to Skype with. Now that I'm overseas, I use it with family back home and with friends and colleagues all over. As a result, I usually have Skype open if my computer is on at home.

Would you consider giving your Skype ID to your students? Do you have one?