Connecting Classrooms

In 2011 I explored ways to facilitate engaging C21 eLearning into the way we educate the students at St Augustine’s College – Sydney. I started the process with the intention of demonstrating how learning can be improved by using technology to enhance the learning experience. My initial intended audience was the new executive team who had questioned the effectiveness of a 1 to 1 program and especially with regards to whether to implement this strategy with Year 5 students.

I first raised a few questions asking my PLN on Twitter (@LiamDunphy) on the #edchat and #edtech forums. Jerry Blumengarten (@cybraryman1) suggested that I contact Van Meter Community Schools (#vanmeter) in Iowa, USA. After some initial consultations with John Carver (@johnccarver, the District Superintendent) and Deron Durflinger (@DeronDurflinger, the Principal) a very successful connection was established between Year 5 at St Augustine’s College – Sydney and Grade 5 at Van Meter Elementary School. Read about this connection in the Projects page of this blog.

The success of the Van Meter connection has started the process of exploring connected classrooms projects around the world. As new projects come on board, they will be added to this blog in the Projects page. If you are interested in exploring a connection project with me, please complete the form on the “Register to Connect” page or contact me via email at or

Following on from the successful Van Meter connection, there have been further requests to connect with schools in Finland and Virginia, USA.

Staff within St Augustine’s College are also trying to incorporate similar engaging eLearning connection projects.

St Augustine’s College would like to be able to use the experience gained from connecting with Van Meter and other schools to start building connected classrooms with other Augustinian schools throughout the world including St Rita’s of Cascia High School in Chicago (7740 S Western Ave, Chicago, IL, 60620) and Villanova College in Brisbane, QLD..

I will be presenting the concept of Connected Classrooms at the TeachMeet Sydney North on Tuesday 14th June at Brigidine College, St Ives.


2 thoughts on “Connecting Classrooms

  1. Hi Liam, we connecting 20 schools in Ireland this year supported by the (National Centre for Technology in Education) with virtual world technology (Opensimulator, the opensource version of Second Life). Even though we’re concentrating on this pilot phase at the moment we already have educators in Malta, Germany and the UK wishing to connect to our ‘grid’. We’re also big fans of the work being done by @lucybarrow in Australia and hope to connect with their grid at a later stage.

    • This Connected Classrooms project started from a conversation between Pam Moran in Virginia and me following a successful connection that I made with Van Meter in Iowa (all documented in various pages of the blog). We’re at the idea formation stage for a big global connection so we would love to connect with your grid. I’m on Twitter @LiamDunphy and we the #ccGlobal hashtag to record our conversations, some of which have been as Gaeilge as we have a few Irish and ex-pat Irish (incl me) on board. If you check the ‘Register’ page, there is a link to the Google Spreadsheet generated from the registration form.

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