Monday, March 2, 2009

Putting iTeam Footprints on Snow Days

Snow Day 2009-2-25Image by SCSpaeth aka k6 via Flickr

Sally Loughlin observes that the established school schedule is packed with obligations and expectations. We frequently look for opportunities to engage students in learning outside of the normally scheduled "footprint" of school. The 2008-2009 Winter has cut into the standard schedule of school more frequently than most years. We have already missed school five or six days this year.
Unfortunately, today's snow day disrupted a meeting that Derrick planned for working with Mrs. Singleton's seventh-graders on the Site Selection Technology Assistance Project. Mrs. Singleton requested iTeam assistance to help her students select a free website for their community awareness efforts associated with their service-learning project. Her students developed a list of the criteria they want a site to meet. The Site Matrix tool supports data collection and analysis of the evaluations.

Derrick and I both looked forward to that meeting. Fortunately, like Herodotus' couriers, "Neither rain, nor sleet, ..." kept us from meeting today. At 10:03 am, Derrick's chat status changed to online and we spontaneously agreed to meet online.

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SCSpaeth 10:19 AM
I see that you are viewing the Site Matrix spreadsheet
Derrick T 10:19 AM
yes i am
cool
SCSpaeth 10:20 AM
Do you have some time to look at the spreadsheet?
Derrick T 10:21 AM
the one that you made
SCSpaeth 10:22 AM
Yes,
Derrick T 10:24 AM
sure
SCSpaeth 10:24 AM
Let's switch over to using the Google chat so that we
don't have to keep switching applications to continue the conversation.
Derrick T 10:25 AM
okay
how do i get there
SCSpaeth 10:28 AM
In the upper right corner is a viewing now bar. Click on it.
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We clearly need some practice in working with these tools but they open a world of possibilities. I look forward to the time when Derrick helps other iTeam members learn to work with these tools and members routinely employ them to support new Technology Assistance Projects and community service-learning activities.

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5 comments:

GenYES Teachers said...

Way to utilize the free tools of the WWW :) It is great to hear of this collaboration :) Keep up the great work and I hope more teachers follow your footprints ( or should I say snowprints :) with using these wonderful free apps for communicating and collaboration.

Keep up the great work!

SC Spaeth said...

@GenYES Teachers
Thanks for your feedback on our work. I tried to learn more about your interest in it by following the link to your ID an found it unlisted. I'm interested in discussing this further.

Mark Tayar said...

Interesting to see you use web technologies to deal with the bad weather. Here in Australia students are limited by floods, bushfires and huge distances to travel and like your snow interruptions, the internet can connect teachers and students dispute physical limitations.

I wonder if GoogleDocs, WetPaint wikis and the new Google Wave would also be useful to you. I will be posting on some of these technologies over the coming months.

Mark
eLearning Design

SC Spaeth said...

Mark:
My daughter spent a semester in Melbourne during the fires last spring so I know about some of your challenges.

Yes, we use Google Docs, and various wikis to support our work e.g.
http://hglt.wetpaint.com
And we are looking forward to integrating Wave when it is more broadly available:
http://scspaeth.blogspot.com/search?q=Wave

My colleagues at Washington State University have also considered how to use these technologies to address issues with the developing flu pandemic:
http://www.nilspeterson.com/category/learning/flu/

Let's keep sharing.

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