Tuesday, 8 March 2011

VLN Primary Kicking Off for 2011

Things are ready to roll with the VLN Primary online classes for 2011. We are starting with confirmed classes this school term of Te Reo, Japanese, French, German & Astronomy. In the wings, to be confirmed and starting from next term will be Spanish, more Japanese & Te Reo classes, Gaelic & Electronics.

It is great to be continuing with a small but solid base of schools who collaborated last year and to welcome a growing number of schools to the VLN Primary community. I have been running Taster Classes the last couple of days (and on request for anyone interested in learning more). We have had quite a number of students from schools as diverse as Thorndon in the heart of Wellington city, to Kaingaroa a school in a lovely and remote Chatham Islands fishing settlement and smalls schools in the hill country of Eastern Taranaki.

Taster classes are designed to familiarise students with the online learning environment and iron out any technical problems schools may encounter when they connect, before they come into our scheduled classes. Students learn about the technology and they also learn how to communicate & interact with others in a way that is quite different from face to face classrooms. These classes allow schools to get an inside look into how online classrooms work before they decide to make a commitment to participate.

One of the students said ‘This is so cool, I can’t wait to start my class!’ Though i responded with a reality hit back to say, ‘Yes i hope you feel like this every week till you complete your class.’ I don’t want students and schools to be instantly hit by the WOW – novelty factor but understand this is an ongoing  commitment to learning. Even so, i was also thinking ‘Me too!’ Looking forward to teaching my class on Friday!

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