Monday, March 10, 2008

Web 2.0 Spreading Like a Subtle Rash

So I had a really good technology day at work. A few more teachers at my ONLINE HS are moving towards using Web 2.0, taking active steps to incorporate it in their personal lives and online courses. Yes, those are separate... for some. Geez, I need to get off this computer.

It started this morning when our lead Website Designer who is also an education technology assistant at our school asked me about Web 2.o. He said that the NCCE conference last week really got him thinking about the education possibilities for the first time. He came to ask me if I would like to participate in a video he wants to create and put up on Youtube. He was excited about creating media (podcasts, videos) that kids could watch anywhere and use to learn on the run. Then I brought up the idea of the "democratization of learning" and he about lost his mind. Loved it. Wanted to hear all about how to get kids to create their own learning experience. This is good news. A lot of the teachers ask him for help, if he becomes another voice of progress at our school then the 2.0 Rash might get airborne.

A couple hours later a teacher and I were talking about blogs in our courses. I use them, she isn't quite there yet. She teaches in the other hybrid component of our school which is a face-to-face elective course and only recently has begun knocking down those four walls. Our blog conversation led to RSS Feeds and pretty soon I was helping her set up her Google Reader and hooked her up with two must read edublogs: and 2 Cents Worth.

Worlds are a changing, the wind is blowing through our building, I can feel just the slightest barometric shift.

Last and most certainly least, I received a new course shell in my ridiculously difficult to use CMS today. It was a gift of my admin who approved a slightly innovative elective course I've been mentally developing since a nagging thought kept me awake all night about 2 months ago. Its a Web 2.0 course where I teach students how to use all the main online tools that many of us are using already, however, only a small handful of my school's students are using right now. The kicker is, it's 100% cross-curriculum. I will help the kids learn how to use the project tools, but the content for all of their projects will come from their 5 other online courses. For example, they will create an xtimeline using all of the material from a unit in their U.S. History course. Maybe their core teachers will let them get cross-credit for the project they develop in my course, maybe not. But no matter what they will learn more than they would if they just did it one way. Especially if that one way was a very old fashioned way, and that will a rash.

1 comment:

Mrs. R. Martin said...

First of all, love the photo! It sets the tone. I hope you will be posting more about the progress of your W2.0 course. I am in a middle school trying to light fires of interest all over the school.
I always check out who is following my twits or commenting on my blog. In addition, I am up to the challenge of Durff's networkchallenge to comment on a new blog.
Great work.