Friday, 28 September 2012

School uses VC to bring Authors into Classrooms across London

It was after school on Wednesday September 19th in the school library at Oaks Park High School (OPHS) in the London Borough of Redbridge. There was a feeling of excitement in the air. A group of year 6 pupils from Fairlop Primary School and year 7 pupils from OPHS were sitting anxiously in front of the video conferencing screen waiting for the conference to begin, with Antony McGowan, author of Dounut Diaries seated in between them. At 3.30pm, as if by magic, the screen in front of them split into four sections. Pupils from Redbridge Primary, Loxford School and Highlands Primary all appeared and waved to each other and to the author they had all been patiently waiting to meet. The pupils from each school had prepared questions to ask Anthony about his books, his writing style and his career. The young readers and writers were clearly inspired by him and in awe that they were all able to see and speak to “Anthony McGowan”. 

This wasn’t the first time OPHS had hosted such an event. The first “meet an author video conference (VC)” the school organised was for twelve schools across London during,The National Year of Reading, in 2009. Linda Hayes, LRC Manager at Oaks Park had organised, Echo Feer and Narinder Dhami to be interviewed live via VC by individual school pupils situated many miles away from Redbridge. Over 2,500 pupils took part with OPHS that day.

Oaks Park have worked with a local secondary school, Woodbridge High School in 2011, to share the costs of bringing authors into school through using VC. By doing this with Woodbridge High both schools saved £350.00 each.

More recently in April 2012 – Pete Johnson author of, The Vampire Blog trilogy, came to OPHS to meet with year 7 pupils. Pupils from Highlands Primary, Parkhill Juniors, Chadwell Heath Academy and Loxford School were all given the opportunity to meet him via video conference also.

Using VC technology enables schools not only to save money through sharing costs of authors fees but provides a secure and reliable way for schools to connect and collaborate together.

Caroline Horn, Director of Reading Zone, who has been working closely with the London Gird for Learning (using
Janet VC services to stream the live conferences across London) said ”Video conferencing gives authors the chance to meet lots of schools at the same time. The pupils are so excited to meet the authors of the books they have been reading. Video conferencing makes the experience real and it’s live ”

For more information about Reading Zone go to

1 comment:

  1. Video conferencing is really good for all because they makes the experience real and it’s live. So get it now and enjoying fastest video conferencing service. Thanks for sharing a really nice information about video conferencing.