Wednesday, August 27, 2008

The Power of Web 2.0 Tools: A 21st Century Learning Experience

Next week, we will be launching our version of K12 learning 2.0. Shelley Paul gave me permission to use her course as a basis and tweak and change to create a 1 PLU version of the course. It is meant not to replace that course but as a 1 PLU option for those who might not feel they have the time to dedicate to a 3 PLU course. The "thinks" as they are called in this course are chunked into modules. There are four required modules. After completing the required modules, participants choose two other modules to complete for their PLU credit. Of course, all modules are visible so participants can explore further in any of the modules.

We had a good number of teachers who began the K12 learning course but for various reasons, couldn't finish it. One issue was that during the school year it was hard for them to have enough time in the week to dedicate to it. This need motivated me to work on a 1 PLU version. I felt like chunking the information into modules made sense and might help teachers not feel so overwhelmed.

My goal is to have everything available to the teachers as of day 1 of the course so they can work at their own pace. We have spent a good bit of time working with teachers on differentiating for students. I felt it was a necessity for us to find ways to differentiate for teachers in our professional development offerings. This "time" issue is one way we can differentiate.

Additionally, we have built in a "choice" component. There are four required modules in the course: Intro to Web 2.0, RSS, Blogging and Creative Commons. We felt these were foundational for everything else. Teachers will choose two other modules to work through: Wikis, Image Sharing, Social Bookmarking, Online Learning, Podcasting and Productivity with Google. Of course, teachers are always welcome to explore some of the other modules as well.

We will soon find out if this concept works out in practicality like it does on paper. Just another way we are trying to bring more teachers along with web 2.0.

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