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Virtual learning commons tasla



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  • 1. Virtual Learning Commons Dr. Holly Weimar and Dr. Karin Perry Sam Houston State University
  • 2. The PowerPoint, examples, and tools we’ll talk about today will be available to you at the end of this presentation. DON’T cramp your hand taking notes.
  • 3. How many of you have heard of David Loertscher's Virtual Learning Commons?
  • 4. So, how is a Virtual Learning Commons different from a traditional library website?
  • 5. In order to make the shift from library website to Virtual Learning Commons, a sense of community needs to be fostered and developed among all stakeholders. With the advent of new technologies that allow for the real-time participation and collaboration of users in an online community, the opportunity presents itself for the VLC to become the 'infrastructure' of the school (Loertscher & Koechlin, 2012), to transform itself from informational website to participative community.
  • 6. Teachers’ Participation, Creation, & Learning IT:Access Administration Professional Participating Platform Library Teachers: Professional Learning Environment Teachers: Assignments
  • 7. Students’ Participation, Creation, & Learning IT:Access AdministrationProfessional Participating Platform Library Teachers: Professional Learning Environment Teachers: Assignments Learners: Showcase Learners: Collaboration
  • 8. Stakeholders’ Participation, Creation, & Learning IT:Access AdministrationProfessional Participating Platform Library Teachers: Professional Learning Environment Teachers: Assignments Learners: Showcase Learners: Collaboration Clubs: Book, etc. PTA / PTO Volunteers Reading: Sharing and Support Create, Build, and Share Tutorials Digital Citizenship, Team Membership, Choice, Engagement
  • 9. • Dr. Weimar and Dr. Perry created a survey using SurveyMonkey. • We posted the survey link to the SHSU Library Student Listserv, TLC, LM_Net, Facebook, and Twitter. • We received 200 responses. How did we come up with the examples for this presentation?
  • 10. What would your ideal virtual presence look like? What should it contain? What should teachers/students/parents have access to? Turn and Talk
  • 11. Why should you provide a Virtual Learning Commons for your teachers/students/parents? • We need to encourage collaboration to prepare students for the future. • We need to make learning accessible in order to provide for “on-the-fly learning” and transform students into self-starters. (Remember what Nicole Cruz said yesterday about what her former student told her he wished he’d known before going to college?)
  • 12. The Five Main Portals of the Virtual Learning Commons
  • 13. The Information Center The Literacy Center The Knowledge Building Center The Experimental Learning Center School Culture
  • 14. The Information Center • The landing page. • Links users to useful tools. • Features a “hook” in the center of the page to draw users to the entire site. (photo slideshow, club info, screencast tutorials, links to blog, Facebook, Twitter, and other social networking sites) • Calendar of events or for teachers to reserve space/equipment.
  • 15. Virtual tours don’t have to be that fancy. Here is another example of what you can do. Mcf7iBI8hY&index=1&list=PL67E5355A0F B59304
  • 16. The Literacy Center • The place for all things reading, writing, speaking, and listening • Digital and In-person Book Club information • Writing Club information • Book trailers • Book reviews (from both students and teachers) • App recommendations • YouTube Channel (from both students and teachers) • Website recommentations
  • 17. The Knowledge Building Center • Personal Learning Networks – hobbies, personal interests, organizations (causes people are passionate about), informational learning • Resources for units of study • The learning experiences featured here can be done in a variety of learning environments including Moodle projects, projects done in content management systems, technological learning spaces, or face to face projects with the organization done in digital space. • Examples of successful projects
  • 18. What is missing from these examples? The Collaborative Learning Experiences. It is difficult to find examples of a true Knowledge Building Center. In addition to Project Resources, you need to provide: Calendars Student work space Information about assessment A place for them to communicate An area for reflection How can this be accomplished? TURN AND TALK
  • 19. The Experimental Learning Center • Educational technology information. Tips, tutorials, guides, resources • The home of the student technology group that tests out and teaches a wide variety of Web 2.0 tools to adults and students around the school • Current school-wide focus issues: calendars, progress reports, plans, action research projects • Project progress plans
  • 20. Irving Middle School Annual Report Norman High School Annual Reports Flyer Library October/November Monthly Report
  • 21. High School School Tech Team
  • 22. School Culture • A living school yearbook; the place that draws in students, teachers, administrators and even parents. It is the exhibition space of individuals and groups connected to the school • Events, assemblies, interviews, celebrations, contests, candid camera shots, sports, concerts
  • 23. Closest Example of True VLC
  • 24.
  • 25. Google Sites (FREE) Haiku Learning (individual teachers can have a FREE account) LibGuides Blackboard Engage (formerly School Fusion and Edline) Platforms to use for Virtual Learning Commons
  • 26. What the librarians want if there were NO obstacles. • Ebooks and a budget for titles (Overdrive??) • Interactive website that students actual use • Individual school library websites and NOT just one for district • Flexible website and NOT the canned site set by the district • Ability to update the website • Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Blog (basically social media) • Fewer blocked websites • BYOD or 1:1 mobile devices • Library’s website prominently displayed on the school’s website • Ability to share photos of students, teachers, projects, and school events • Easy-to-remember URL • Live, embedded video and/or chat functionality. (Ask a Librarian
  • 27. Where are you going to start? What is something you’ll be able to accomplish next year? If you’ve already started, what are you going to add? Turn and Talk
  • 28. To download or view the PowerPoint, please visit n To access all the links used in today’s presentation (and even more resources) go to
  • 29.  American Association of School Librarians. (2007). Standards for the 21st-Century learner. Retrieved from  Kajder, S. (2010). Adolescents and digital literacies: Learning alongside our students. National Council of Teachers of English.  Loertscher, D. V., & Koechlin, C. (2012, October). The Virtual Learning Commons and school improvement. Teacher Librarian (39)6. pp. 20-24.  Loertscher, D. V., Koechlin, C., & Rosenfeld, E. (2012). The Virtual Learning Commons: Building a participatory school learning community. Learning Commons Press. References: