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Virtual Communities for Professional Development and Growth
How do we promote the knowledge, skills and sense of urgency for 21st Century teaching and learning among all teachers in our schools? As the physical and virtual worlds converge to become the 'real world' of teaching and learning, virtual exchanges, online mentoring and other Web-based environments will play increasingly important roles in educational reform. The presenter will share "lessons learned" from her seven years of experience in designing and leading virtual communities of practice.

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Vlc Techforum

  1. 2. Today’s Agenda http://21stcenturylearning.wikispaces.com Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach [email_address] Skype: snbeach Web: http://www.21stcenturycollaborative.com Blog: http://21stcenturylearning.typepad.com Wiki: http://21stcenturylearning.wikispaces.com
  2. 3. A Definition of Community Communities are quite simply, collections of individuals who are bound together by natural will and a set of shared ideas and ideals. “ A system in which people can enter into relations that are determined by problems or shared ambitions rather than by rules or structure.” (Heckscher, 1994, p. 24). The process of social learning that occurs when people who have a common interest in some subject or problem collaborate over an extended period to share ideas, find solutions, and build innovations. (Wikipedia)
  3. 4. Professional Communities of Practice Regular, face-to-face discussions for the purpose of reviewing evidence of student learning, determining student needs and designing interventions to address those needs.
  4. 5. Trends that Drive the Need for Change Trend 1 – Social and intellectual capital are the new economic values in the world economy. This new economy will be held together and advanced through the building of relationships. Unleashing and connecting the collective knowledge, ideas, and experiences of people creates and heightens value. Example : http://falconms.typepad.com/fatech/ Source: Journal of School Improvement, Volume 3, Issue 1, Spring 2002 http://www.ncacasi.org/jsi/2002v3i1/ten_trends
  5. 6. Trend 7 – Technology will increase the speed of communication and the pace of advancement or decline. Using participatory media educators will help today’s students shape tomorrow’s world. Teachers will become partners with students- using learning communities to open the classroom to the world. They will deal with real world problems and opportunities while gaining a global perspective.
  6. 7. “ Our assumptions about learning are fundamentally flawed” Timothy E. Wirth Professor in Learning Technologies Harvard Graduate School of Education Dr. Chris Dede Three kinds of Common Human Behavior Sleeping- can be standardized Eating- very divergent tastes Bonding- more complex still We treat learning like sleeping.. but it is more like eating or bonding. No variety, in fact often less than a bad fast food restaurant.
  7. 8. Looking Closely at Learning Community Design 4L Model (Linking, Lurking, Learning, and Leading) inspired by John Seeley Brown http://learningcircuits.blogspot.com/2006/06/roles-in-cops.html This model is developed around the roles and interactions members of a community have as participants in that community.
  8. 9. Linking   These are visitors who find a community by one means or another. They may have bookmarked the site or added it to their RSS reader. They are in a “testing” mode to determine if this community if of interest to them and worth giving more of the time and attention. Lurking Often the largest segment of a community, these individuals pay attention to the activity of the group and occasionally participate in various activities. Wenger calls this group Legitimate Peripheral Participants (LPP). They may be interested in greater involvement, but either don’t feel worthy or don’t know how. For others the content may only be peripheral to their work.  Learning These are regular visitors who contribute to the community regularly. They are considered “members” of the community. Occasionally , they may take on a project or event leadership role as either an “audition” for a more core role or as a way to lead despite overall time unavailability. Leading At the core of a community are the Leaders of that community. Leadership is a matter of commitment and willingness to contribute on a consistent basis. Leaders may or may not be designated via title. Roles, other than community coordinator, may evolve as needed. Wenger says it is the responsibility of leadership to “build a fire” of activity that is strong enough to draw people to the community and encourage greater participation.
  9. 11. consumer - The first phase is where participants (often referred to as lurkers) simply read and explore the posts of others. Far from being passive as the word lurker suggests, consumers can be very active participants in an online community - just not yet visible to others. commentor - as this label suggests, these people make comments on others posts (either on blogs, or in discussion forums), often seeking clarification, agreeing with a statement, or offering a suggestion or link to something similar. contributor - as this label suggests, contributors are those who have started their own blogs or who initiate new threads on discussion forums. They are confident about putting forth their own ideas etc. commentator - a commentator is someone who frequently takes a 'meta' view of what is going on, providing a level of leadership within the community. Their contributions will often draw attention to the 'bigger picture', making links with other work - analyzing and synthesizing the contributions of others.
  10. 12. Virtual Learning Communities of Relationship A community built on relationships promotes special kinds of connections among people. These connections might be based on a shared concern, issue or learning problem, but in each instance, the emphasis is on the relationships built among participants. Issues of commitment, trust and values are inherent in any relationships which emerge in the community. (Teacher Leaders Network) Virtual Learning Communities of Place Individuals in this type of community enjoy a common habitat or locale. (My Space, Second Life, World of Warcraft) Virtual Learning Communities of Passion Communities of passion reinforce people's commitment to other people, to common goals, shared values and shared conceptions of being and doing. This can be as trivial as a shared interest in wine making, or as profound as a shared search for truth. Virtual Learning Communities of Memory A virtual learning community of memory is based on a shared past or a common sense of history. (Holocaust Survivors Network)
  11. 13. Let’s Not Talk Community Let’s Experience it! please join us- http:// snipurl.com/techforum Panel Guests Chris Betcher - Australia Terry Freedman - England Emily Kornblut - NY City
  12. 14. What about the shift do you like? What troubles you? What will you use? At your tables please discuss the following. Be prepared to share some of your groups ideas and reflections.
  13. 15. FORMAL INFORMAL You go where the bus goes You go where you choose Jay Cross – Internet Time
  14. 16. MULTI-CHANNEL APPROACH SYNCHRONOUS ASYNCHRONOUS PEER TO PEER WEBCAST Instant messenger forums f2f blogs photoblogs vlogs wikis folksonomies Conference rooms email Mailing lists CMS Community platforms VoIP webcam podcasts PLE Worldbridges
  15. 17. Blogs and RSS My Blog http://21stcenturylearning.typepad.com RSS http://www.bloglines.com/public/snbeach Blogging Community http://supportblogging.com/Links+to+School+Bloggers
  16. 18. Tech Enhanced Learning http:// techenhancedlearning.wikispaces.com /
  17. 19. 21 st Century Wiki
  18. 20. Virtual Community Tools Ning
  19. 21. http://www.elearnspace.org/Articles/google_whitepaper.pdf
  20. 22. It takes a lot of courage to release the familiar and seemingly secure, to embrace the new. But there is no real security in what is no longer meaningful. There is more security in the adventurous and exciting, for in movement there is life, and in change there is power. Alan Cohen