ThinkWave ThinkWave.com is a free web service that helps teachers easily communicate with students and parents. Teachers can use ThinkWave.com to provide real-time information about assignments, results, attendance and school curriculum to students and parents. By using ThinkWave, teachers are helping families become more involved in their childrens education. It is simple for teachers to provide the benefits of ThinkWave.com to students and parents. First, a teacher should get his or her free copy of ThinkWave Educator classroom management software. Then, ThinkWave Educator automatically publishes classroom information on ThinkWave.com. Finally, the teacher gives handouts to students and parents which allow them to login to ThinkWave.com. This process is largely automated (and vividly explained), allowing even the most computer-shy student, parent, or teacher to get online. Design Technology 2109 (1999-2000) Cultural Tourism 3127 (2000-01)
ThinkWave System was used as a part of the class (i.e., students had to access it to obtain assignments). Two thirds of the students in Design Technology 2109 indicated that they would like to see ThinkWave used more in their schooling. With the same course, only six parents completed the survey and only two of these accessed the system. However, all six indicated that they would like to see ThinkWave used more as well. In the Cultural Tourism 3127 course, again two thirds of students indicated that they would like to see the use of ThinkWave expanded. Only four parents completed the survey this time and out of those four only two had accessed the system. Yet again, all the parents who completed the survey indicated that they wished more teachers would use ThinkWave.
BlackBoard While the Blackboard.com system offers many different services and products, the one which was used in this pilot was their online course delivery system. This system allows teachers to extend their classroom beyond school walls in ways including: – posting course materials and handouts on the Web; – providing online forums for class discussions; – collecting and annotating Internet-based curricular resources; – using online assessments to help students prepare for standardized tests; – differentiating instruction for exceptional populations (gifted and talented, special education, advanced placement) using group tools; – conducting review sessions and parent conferences via real-time virtual classroom and chat tools; and communicating more easily and effectively with parents. Career Exploraion 1101 (2000-01)
BlackBoard System was again used as a part of the class (i.e., students had to access it to participate in asynchronous discussion forum and to obtain assignments). This time only half of the students in the Career Exploration 1101 felt that they would like to see BlackBoard used more in their schooling. However, two thirds indicated that they would like to see other online technologies that could report attendance and grades, post assignments and test review materials used more in their schooling. There was no separate accounts for parents with this system, so there was no need to survey parents.
myGradeBook myGradebook is "a web-based teacher gradebook useful in enhancing communication between teachers, students and parents in all levels of education. myGradebook allows teachers to log in and work on their gradebook at any time from any computer connected to the Internet. When you assign passwords to students and parents, they can log in to view their own grading and attendance summaries. With myGradebook you can track, calculate, and report grades and attendance securely over the Internet. World Geography 3200/3202 (2001-02) Online Advanced Placement Social Studies courses (2001-02)
myGradeBook Use of the system was entirely voluntary. Fifteen of the 23 students had home computers and eight of these students accessed the myGradeBook system (out of the 13 who completed the end of term survey). All eight who accessed the system and three who didn’t access the system indicated that they would use it more if additional teachers made use of myGradeBook. With the same course, only three parents completed the survey and none of these accessed the system. However, all three indicated that they would like to see myGradeBook used more as well. There were only five students involved in the online Advanced Placement initiative and only one of those five accessed the system. All five, however, indicated that they would like to see teachers in their own school make use of similar systems.
Online Homework Calendars There are numerous types of web-based calendars available on the Internet. The one that has been used by the CHASED Research Initiative is Calendar Server. Calendar Server is a free service, that allows individuals to create their own accounts and maintain a calendar at the www.CalendarServer.com site. The Calendar Server site is used to create a calendar of homework; up-coming tests, assignments, and science labs; special events; etc. that students and parents can access from the school or from home. Grade 8 (2001-02)
Online Homework Calendars Use of the system was entirely voluntary. Thirteen of the 21 students had home computers and five of these students accessed the CalendarServer system. All five who accessed the system and seven who didn’t access the system indicated that they would use it more if additional teachers made use of online calendars. With the same course, thirteen parents completed the survey and six of these accessed the system. All six that accessed the system and five of the seven who didn’t access the system indicated that they would like to see online homework calendars used more often in their child’s schooling.
Plagerism Detection PlagiServe is an advanced service designed to assist educators in detecting academic dishonesty. It is a powerful tool that verifies the originality of papers by using Internet-based technology. For example: – PlagiServe not only searches the Internet for duplicates of the paper, but also analyzes it, providing evidence of plagiarism to the teacher. – PlagiServe has an extensive local database of 70,000 student term papers, essays and cliff notes. – PlagiServe has crawled all existing Paper Mills and searches through all the papers they contain that makes digital cheating meaningless. – PlagiServe searches over 1.3 billion pages when checking originality of the paper. As the Internet becomes more accessible to students, the ability of instructors to guard against academic dishonesty become more difficult. While there are a number of plagerism detection sites available on the Internet, Plagiserve is one of the few that is provided free-of-charge to any instructor, regardless of number of classes or the number of students. Canadian History 1201 (2002-03) World History 3201 (2002-03)
Connecting the Home and School through Electronic Dialogue http://www.ncf.ca/chased/