Cross-Country Collaboration Continues to Amaze


We are spending time each day in my class at least talking about our upcoming collaboration with Pernille Ripp’s class in Wisconsin. On some days we are doing work related to the project. On others we are simply discussing. Today, when I broached the topic with my students, David felt the need to opine indignantly, “Mrs. Ripp, Mrs. Ripp, Mrs. Ripp. Everything is Ripp, Ripp, Ripp!” Had David gotten the message I got this evening, perhaps his thoughts would have been different.

I received a very exciting note from Pernille around 4:30. She notified me to say that her class’ care package was in the mail, and I could expect it in 3 to 5 days.

And I was totally like, “WOO HOO!”

Honestly, our collaboration has taken on a life of its own. I never dreamed there would be gifts involved. And food! I never thought I’d be trying so hard to outfox and outmaneuver Pernille and stay a step ahead of her in terms of what my class can present to her’s. (I think I’m falling behind…)

Nor did I envision my students starring in a video tour of the school. We plan to share it with Mrs. Ripp‘s class. I especially didn’t expect three of my quietest girls to stand shoulder to shoulder for their line and say it with such confidence. It’s odd – whenever the still camera comes out when I want to document their learning, notebooks become shields and faces miraculously disappear behind hands. However, for the video, there was no such trepidation or angst. The girls stood tall and proud, sharing information about their school.

This is fast developing into a project that I can begin to consider a hallmark in my career. There is such an in-sync sharing of ideas and inspiration. I’m amazed at what is transpiring in my class because of this, and I feel the potential is somewhat limitless.

There are benefits for me and cross-country collaborator Pernille, but they’re incidental to what we’re seeing from our kids.

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