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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Cool Things That Happen 2006-2007 Online

Watching students enter a course and navigate a variety experiences which resulted in the successful completion of the online experience. A number of students were finally successful in producing incredible writing and sharing their work with others. I was amazed at the number of activities they are engaged in while attempting to attend school and finish online courses and how they feel once they have finished. One student has always struggled with literature and compositions and found the supportive environment of online learning to allow them to take risks and achieve success.

The shock a few of my students had when they learned that I was aware of life in rural areas and the connection of riding horses, motor bikes, skateboards, rodeo's, gymnastics-I think this helped them "connect". As for antique tractors I was amazed at how many students understood the names and ages of these old pieces of iron.

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Reflections of June 26th

This has been a "packed" day full of new and not so new technologies. The exciting parts involved using and solving the Cmaps and Mind Meister tools. Integrating the concepts of VOCAL and working collaboratively with others in creating an online "real time" responses. Working with our departments and colleagues on looking at courses and figuring out new ways to enrich and enhance the content is priceless. It is very exciting to be in the same boat with others who share a common vision and seek the best in finding ways to increase student success.

Virtual "2 x 4"

How do you get the attention of your audience? Using an attention getting activity or puzzle to engage students in active participation. I must admit, I have not thought about purposely designing a virtual 2x4 within an online course. I have made the assumption that they are geared towards completion of course and working through the lessons. I do use personal reflections of particular readings to facilitate ideas and thoughts within themselves and others.

With my face to face classes, having a gathering activity that gets the students engaged in dialogue from a "puzzle" or problem solving situation. Within the virtual world, this could be simply a piece of media that has the elements of a puzzle or something to capture the attention and provide a "thinking" time that requires a response.