ELT through videoconferencing in primary schools in Uruguay : first steps

Banegas, Darío Luis (2013) ELT through videoconferencing in primary schools in Uruguay : first steps. Innovation in Language Learning and Teaching, 7 (2). pp. 179-188. ISSN 1750-1237

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    Abstract

    Plan Ceibal is an interinstitutional undertaking which has distributed XO laptops and Internet connectivity among primary school learners and teachers across Uruguay and developed a wide range of educational programmes. Ceibal administration believes that it is imperative to introduce English as a Foreign Language in primary education through the use of new modes of teaching which incorporate the OLPC XO laptop as a tool for learning engagement and democratisation. Uruguay has secured funds for a project based on blended learning which integrates remote teaching through videoconferencing, the use of a learning management system, and professional development. Plan Ceibal seeks to demonstrate that lessons delivered by remote teachers via videoconferencing with support from classroom teachers (CTs) with very limited or no command of English can facilitate successful learning outcomes in learners and CTs. In this article, I describe the pilot phase of this project which aims at delivering 5000 remote lessons by 2015.