More Global Projects

Julie shared a great list of global projects today.

There are so many great projects coming from the grassroots efforts of educators, it is time for you to join in as you plan the curriculum for next year.

How will your students collaborate globally?
Will they begin to understand their part in a global world?

My students were complaining today:

“Mrs. Vicki, it is like this. WE ARE SO CUT OFF IN NORTH AMERICA! With our time zones it is harder for us to work on this project than it is for the other students who tend to be awake closer to the same time. We are frustrated because of our time zone and how it disconnects us with the world!”

My goodness! I guess I've been a little envious of Julie who is able to help Ed and John and Barbara more effectively because her school day overlaps theirs. Mine does not!

These are the things that we don't observe or notice without such collaboration. I believe that such projects make us less ethnocentric and more globally minded and are essential for encouraging a generation of leaders who understand the dynamics of collaborating effectively.

Meanwhile, my student who is working Massively Multiplayer Educational gaming and analyzing the political ramifications of it has brought to me some video from youtube. He has turned up several videos showing very blatant, terrible “gang” behavior and sexual harrassment happening on Xbox live.

(Warning, there is profanity in this video! It is very graphic and upsetting.)

In this video, several gamers, (obviously men by their voices) are ganging up on a female player and continuing to kill her avatar as they cooperate to harrass and kill her. Interestingly one person is filming it.

My student said something like this to me,

“Mrs. Vicki, this is terrible behavior and upsets me. As we move online in such environments, the companies who create these worlds are basically the government and when they allow such behavior to happen, they are allowing bad things. I think we are going to have to change the way we think about games and virtual worlds as being spaces that need rules as well. We are going to have to look to gaming providers as governments and our real governments are going to have to require behavior that is appropriate.

Will there be intra -game lawsuits and complaints? Actually, some of these are self regulating however if the people in the game don't have high standards, it won't work.

What would happen if each member of this game was in a different country. How would such behavior be stopped? Right now it cannot! What should be done?”

And another light bulb went on.

Sometimes I wonder if I am more current because my students are my teachers.

Perhaps politicans and others need to be seeking the same professors as I have in my classroom. This is definitely the “bleeding” edge of technology with my students easily getting off task on youtube as others rip video for legitimate videos. I have to monitor their behavior closely and realize that sometimes although students are very excited… it may be for legitimate purposes and not for something off task! What a new mind blowing world this is!

tag: , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Never miss an episode

Get the 10-minute Teacher Show delivered to your inbox.

Powered by ConvertKit
Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis

Vicki Davis is a full-time classroom teacher and IT Director in Georgia, USA. She is Mom of three, wife of one, and loves talking about the wise, transformational use of technology for teaching and doing good in the world. She hosts the 10 Minute Teacher Podcast which interviews teachers around the world about remarkable classroom practices to inspire and help teachers. Vicki focuses on what unites us -- a quest for truly remarkable life-changing teaching and learning. The goal of her work is to provide actionable, encouraging, relevant ideas for teachers that are grounded in the truth and shared with love. Vicki has been teaching since 2002 and blogging since 2005. Vicki has spoken around the world to inspire and help teachers reach their students. She is passionate about helping every child find purpose, passion, and meaning in life with a lifelong commitment to the joy and responsibility of learning. If you talk to Vicki for very long, she will encourage you to "Relate to Educate" or "innovate like a turtle" or to be "a remarkable teacher." She loves to talk to teachers who love their students and are trying to do their best. Twitter is her favorite place to share and she loves to make homemade sourdough bread and cinnamon rolls and enjoys running half marathons with her sisters. You can usually find her laughing with her students or digging into a book.

All Posts »


Steve May 3, 2007 - 2:58 pm

I have always been astonished at how much racism and sexism is exhibited on XBox Live. But it’s even more astonishing that your students have a strong enough sense of morals to be outraged by it.

In theory, you can report people like that, but your student is right, there’s really nothing that can be done about it.

Except of course to take offense and let the other people know what you think about such behavior. It’s the silent acceptance by so many that enables people to continue doing it.

jason May 3, 2007 - 3:15 pm

I have some random comments to make about this post:

The game being played in this video is Halo 2. The woman in this video could easily have done a number of things to stop what was happening:
1) She could have left the game (that particular match) and joined a new one
2) She could have blocked voice chat with the people she was playing with
3) She could have (and should have) reported the other players for harassment

I don’t point this out because I think she deserved it. I point it out because the companies that are creating these worlds ARE trying to police them. However, just like in real life we need to stand up for ourselves and others, we need to do the same in game/virtual worlds.

That she stayed and suffered through the abuse is another interesting part of this. It’s clear that the group of guys she was playing with were in a “clan”. At one point you see the player filming the video adjust his voice mask settings. Not wanting someone to hear your real voice tells me that you knew what you were doing wasn’t right.

Games that allow for networking create the same types of group behavior seen in other horrible acts. These guys all had phallic clan symbols, and acted as a group to sexually harass someone. My guess (having played this game and interacted with similar types of groups) is that even if the odd person out was a guy, he would have been sexually harassed as well. Another twist on all of this is that the game type they were playing is called ‘Slayer’. These guys were not killing each other on purpose and were hunting the odd person out intentionally.

leon's web 3d blog May 3, 2007 - 3:27 pm

virtual world also needs rules including online games. or they will die soon.

Michael May 3, 2007 - 9:50 pm

Anyone who has played on xbox live for more than twenty minutes can tell you that public matches are a cesspool of sexism, racism, and homophobia.

The thing with poor behavior online is that it is encouraged by anonymity. Xbox Live players have to sign in using their Microsoft created and managed accounts. I believe that if a player is reported for harassment, they are just threatened with account cancellation. I think they should receive warning ratings that are publicly viewable, much like AOL instant messenger has had for years.

I think people would be better behaved if they lived under the threat of public humiliation. In the meantime, all you can do is play in private matches with small groups of friends – which I’ve always thought was more fun anyway. :D

John May 3, 2007 - 10:35 pm

Pretty insightful on the topic of rules and online games. As an educator, blogger, and leader in a high profile World of Warcraft guild, I can offer up the other side of the coin. is a link to the bylaws established over time in our guild. Defining “appropriate” is often interesting give the wide range of age, background, and culture of a global group. It’s also wickedly interesting how an online community of volunteers needs to adjust as it grows from 10 to 100 to 500 people. :o)

profv May 4, 2007 - 5:31 pm

What a great example of what happens when we give our students the skills to think beyond the obvious. I get tired of trying to convince by students (most of which are practicing teachers) that even young students can understand the messages that the media puts out just by asking them to think (what would you do if you were the Road Runner and someone was always trying to beat you up or do you think all blond girls are not good students or mean?).

To comment on your Horizan Project with the time differences, when I worked on a project with a school in Peru we had differences in school schedules and the time difference changed between summer and winter. These are things we don’t think of until we experience them.

Lelia Katherine Thomas May 8, 2007 - 12:34 pm

I have to agree with what Jason pointed out and also include a couple of my own opinions (note that I’m a 20-year-old female).

Point #1: I think there are some games/game environments that for some people, at some times, can influence them to be more aggressive and/or abusive in or out of the virtual reality. (Postmodern stance there.) If this were not true, there would be many more cases of real life abuse occurring, due to the gaming environment, which traditionally has lots of violence.

Point #2: If I had been that girl, I would have stayed, too. I would have laughed, made a couple of halfhearted attempts to get away, but I think I wouldn’t have cared in the end enough to log off or turn off the voice chat. Because, let’s face it. They AREN’T a threat. They’re an annoyance.

Watching the video, I laughed a few times and thought, “Wow, what a bunch of idiotic geeks,” but not once did I feel demeaned as a female or like the girl should have scurried off in discomfort. Come on. That would have given them the upper hand, after all.

It’s just a game. If she had been really bothered, she had options to combat the situation, but I think probably felt like I did: “weird, but who cares?”

Comments are closed.

The Cool Cat Teacher Blog
Vicki Davis writes The Cool Cat Teacher Blog for classroom teachers everywhere