This collaborative project aims to reduce the social isolation of our students (& teachers) by providing opportunities for them to connect & learn together online. Would your school like to join in too?

This project addresses the unique and special needs of our students in rural and remote schools. Growing up in remote and isolated schools for many students can mean they have little social contact with others their own age until they go to high school. Reducing the social isolation for our children (& teachers) and preparing them for successful transition for high school is a key goal of this project.

In addition, this type of schools collaboration provides a connection to the wider world; increased access to a wider curriculum; caters for children's’ special interests, allows children to be more autonomous in their learning and to benchmark their learning with a wider group of peers; to interact with teachers and adults from outside of their school community; and to engage whanau and community with our students learning.

Sole charge Principals also benefit through strong professional networks and friendships formed through what has now become a ‘virtual team’ of teachers.

A key part of this project is our combined schools camp, held in Wellington every second year. This is a highlight for students and teachers alike and a time to cement friendships made online. 

See more of our most recent camp here on Storify.

Click here to see more of our programme overview (Google Doc)

Here is our presentation from ULearn15 conference.

What our kids say:

  • I love online learning because you socialize and you get to meet new people you wouldn't meet any other way and all the teachers are super cool and help you out if you get stuck. 
  • I love rural kids because i have actually met most of these kids .
  • It was fun meeting new kids. I love it and I don't think anything should be changed I'm loving the seven wonder unit. It's really fun. lot of fun activities 
  • Rural project is really fun and i hope we do it next year :) I think it is very cool. 
  • GREAT class really enjoy it I think it has been a great opportunity to learn different ways and styles. I would definitely recommend this style of learning to other students.
  • Advice: Take up every opportunity you can and make the most of it.
  • Funnnn :) I thought it was great having a way to talk to the other kids- like in class or out of it. 
  • It was fun. :) I had an awesome time meeting new kids on the camp. i have made life long friends.

We would like to make this project available for other schools to participate with a second class now running. If you think you have students that would benefit from this opportunity AND you are able to contribute & support as an eTeacher, then please contact rachel.whalley@vln.school.nz