Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Langwitches' Video of the Mystery Skype Call

Last June, 
Mrs. Tolisano  (@langwitches) invited Mrs. Yollis' class to be part of a 
Mystery Skype call with a group of teachers! Read about the event here

Mrs. Tolisano created a video of the call to share with teachers and parents in the hopes that others will incorporate this type of authentic learning in their classrooms.

Here is her video about the event!

Mrs. Yollis used the concept of  “The Digital Learning Farm: Students as Authentic Contributors” by Alan November to create jobs for each student or group of students. 

Collage by Silvia Tolisano
 Here are photos of the students doing their jobs:
Three Inquirers who asked the yes or no questions.

 Two Question Keepers sat next to the Inquirers and typed the questions and answers in Word. 
It was helpful to review the yes and no answers quickly. 
Click to Enlarge
Others were Google Mappers. They used Google Maps and traditional atlases to zero in on the clues.

A few students used our giant atlas we call "Big Blue" to find the mystery location.


Another station was filled with Logical Reasoners. They listened to the clues and tried to eliminate states that did not match the clues. 

 Behind the Inquirers were the Clue Keepers. They collected relevant information from everyone. 
Jaden and Alexa took notes on TodaysMeet. Here is the transcript!

 Nick was the Runner. If students had problems, Nick would try and solve them. In addition, he would run facts to the Inquirers that the Logical Reasoners wanted to contribute.

 It was a very close game filled with fantastic questions! Everyone worked hard to solve the mystery together.

Mrs. Yollis' class asked if the Mystery Callers lived in St. Joseph, Missouri and the answer was...

Kristen was the phabulous photographer!

Read Mrs. Tolisano's post about the event called
The Excitement of Learning.

If you're interesting in a Mystery Skype call, here is a site to make connections. It was set up by Mr. Avery!

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What do you think of Langwitches' Mystery Skype video?

What value do you see in this type of activity?  


  1. Dear Mrs Yollis,

    I really liked this concept of The Mystery Skye Call. I feel this is another way of incorparating blogging on another level.

    The value which I did notice while I was reading your wonderful post that it gets students to work as a whole team with listening skills and collaborating not as one but as a team of students.
    Which they should great skill and did all of the above.

    Each student needed the other students like a chain reaction to work out who the mystery skpye caller was and to each students credit they worked it out!

    With a great team you came achieve!

    From your blogging pal,

    PS hope you are having a restful summer holiday Mrs Yollis! :)

  2. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    I really enjoyed doing the skype call with Missouri! Watching the video of our call brought back great memories.

    One memory that I remember is of Jaden and I doing "Today's Meet." When we were doing "Today's Meet," we had to type really fast because the teachers from Missouri, and our class, had a fast conversation. I got to learn how to type really fast, without looking at the keyboard.

    Another thing I really liked about our skype call is that we won. Our class guessed Missouri's state and capital before they guessed ours. It was a really close game. I can't believe that we won against 30 teachers. WOW!

    What was your favorite part of the Mystery Skype call?

    I had a great year!

    Your almost former student,

  3. Dear Mrs. Yollis,

    I really liked the mystery skype call and loved being the inquirer because I had to thnk and act quickly. I also liked the video that Mrs. Tolisano made. Her graph was great.

    The mystery skyp call taught me a lot about the United States and how to quickly find information on a map.

    Your former student,

  4. @ AA,

    Hello! I've been on summer vacation and have not been too good at commenting back! Hope you and your family are doing well! :-) Hi to Bianca!

    I completely agree with you that it is another fantastic way to incorporate blogging and learning. So many things are happening at once...the individual thinking that goes on when a question is asked or answered, the geography component, and then the collaboration that must happen. Wow! There was so much excitement in the room! I LOVED it and so did my students!

    @ Alexa,

    What a fantastic quality comment! I'm glad to see that your writing skills are still quite strong and that you are ready for fourth grade! :-)

    Yes, you and Jaden had quite a task of taking notes in TodaysMeet. Your fingers were flying! Knowing how to type without looking at your fingers is a very valuable skill. I'm glad to hear that you mastered that in third grade!

    I agree that it was exciting when the class won. When they asked Is Sacramento your state capital? I thought they might win. Luckily you kids persevered and won! (Persevered is a fancy word that means you never gave up.)

    I think you might be confused about St. Joseph, Missouri. That was their city name, but St. Joseph is not the state capital. Do you know the capital of Missouri? Do you remember what the Pony Express was and why it was a good clue about St. Joseph? Let me know if you remember. (It's okay to check our Twitter feed!)

    I had a great year with you too, Alexa! :-)

    @ Miriam,

    I'm glad that you enjoyed the Mystery Skype call so much! Everyone had to think quickly and work together, but as the Inquirer, you had a lot of pressure. As you can see from Mrs. Tolisan's video, everyone worked hard, but had a lot of fun! Watching your faces as the clues were answered filled me with delight! I am exceedingly proud of each of you!

    I'm glad to hear that you learned so much about the United States through participation in this lesson. Do you remember anything about the Pony Express? :-)

    Your friend,
    Mrs. Y♥llis

  5. @ Mrs Yollis,

    Thank you for replying back to me it is always so nice to hear from you!

    Thats what holidays are for time to relax and switch off.

    Do hope your family are all well too. Hello to mum from BB and I.
    Bianca is back at school after having two weeks off.

    How, right you are so many things going on during the mystery skype session. The children did an outstanding job working together as one.

    Enjoy from your pal,

  6. As we are watching your fabulous skype video over the activity one of the teachers did ask how many students are in your class during this activity?

  7. We have 25 kids in the class. I try to rotate the jobs so everyone has different experiences.

    Good luck!

    ~Mrs. Y♥llis


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