Tuesday, 10 October 2006

Back 2 Skl!

Not a lot of hands on school stuff happening for me this week as I was pretty late getting my timetable in but still good to be back in school with the hum of activity all around. I have been working on a couple of proposals for various things hopefully to become reality this term & beyond - for our kids, for our schools & for my own professional pathways... Will blog about those when there is something a bit more firm there.

I have been following up on the progress of our TaraNet elearning students as they head into this final term & the high stakes testing that comes with it. Some mixed and interesting responses from them which will help guide future learning for those that follow in their footsteps.
  • "Everything is going fine with me. We're keeping up with our work and are now managing to actually have class every week! We do most of our work on the moodle website now, which is better than doing it in our books because we actually get results."
    Point:
    the one VC class per week is not all there is to e-learning the whole learning environment and the interactions happening there are also very important.
  • "... chemistry is a bit harder though because the need to use the lab and i have to sort everything out myself and still havent got to doing either practical and passing yet"
    Point: in-school student support is critical for accessing resources outside of the existing school structure of timetable, people & concrete resources
These couple of responses indicate a larger picture that needs to be addressed in schools when we think of 'personalised' learning (I did hear this catchphrase touted at ULearn...) - there is a lot of support that needs to sit in behind this for students & changes schools need to make to their structures and systems to allow for it. A big ask to move beyond rhetoric to reality.
I have also been looking ahead to preparing our e-teachers for 2007 with this point to ponder for those who may be considering joining our e-learning community: "E-learning is not only a great opportunity for our students but is an awesome professional learning opportunity for our teachers. They can really follow their passions and interests by offering courses that they might not otherwise get to teach in their own school. I am talking here about those types of courses just off the edge of your traditional subject areas - for eg. Environmental studies, biotech, journalism. It is these sorts of classes that I think we need more of in our Virtual Learning Network."
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