As one school year ends, another begins. I am going to post to my blog my goals I would like to have accomplished during the 2010-11 school year. (There are 10!)
Goal 1- Investigate distance/online options for teaching and learning and develop a comprehensive e-Plan for district implementation.
This year, I have seen a significant rise in the use of technology in our district. Digital storytelling, Wiki’s, Blogging, Social Networking, as well as a wealth of Web2.0 tools are engaging and impacting learning and teaching in our classrooms.
In January, our district transitioned to Google Apps for Education, and this summer we are preparing for a student transition as well. It is exciting to see the innovations that staff and teachers have come up with – so quickly after implementation. To put it frankly, we are having unbelievable conversations and ideas to come up with new and much more efficient ways to obtain, collect, and communicate information. This summer we will be integrating Google Apps with our students. I have even registered for a third domain for elementary students in which we can provide “walled garden” access to the suite of collaborative tools.
Our teacher’s use of Moodle is also influencing learning beyond our brick and mortar classrooms. I announced earlier that our high school math department has unanimously decided to “ditch textbooks”. By developing their own curriculum with a blend of open education resources (oer) and teacher created content – students will have 24/7 access to teacher content/ lecture.
We recently installed our own Moodle server so that we, as a district, have more control over design and user access with Moodle. This summer we plan to merge several of the district systems (Active Directory, Moodle, and Google Apps) to provide a more user-friendly experience for our students and a more efficient experience for support services. (yeah!)
These examples are just the tip of the elearning iceberg. I am very proud of what we have going on in our district, yet I truly feel that a comprehensive plan needs to be developed to put all the pieces (image) together. Right now, we have a piecemeal of activity happening, and need a systemic approach to ensure that all our students have access/experience to effective collaborative online environments. Please note – that I feel eLearning does NOT need to be just fully online courses – but can also represent a blend of activities in the f2f or blended (part f2f/part online) classroom.
What do you think? What other pieces are there in this eLearning puzzle? It’s going to be a journey – for sure!