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Author Topic: Introductions  (Read 6978 times)
leroyh
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« on: September 18, 2008, 03:31:39 AM »

Greetings and salutations:

I am delighted to be part of this forum and look forward to some fruitful deliberations.  I am particularly interested in this project because it is related to my research area.  I am a PhD student at the University of Nottingham and I am researching the use of Web 2.0 as an alternative to excluded secondary school students.  I started looking at the use of Moodle as a tool but came across this great integration tool that can make this even more meaningful to students.  My research is in its infancy and will need substantial directions as to the area of more specific emphasis.  This is where this forum or community can provide some impetus in my decision.  I want to look at students' reactions, and the way they interact and benefit from the technology.

I have been a secondary school educator in Humanities Department for over 13 years and have been using Moodle as a tool in the classroom primarily as a source of enrichment but realized the endless possibilities since students were using it for other uses which I thought was great.  When I asked most of them what they enjoyed most about Moodle they responded that they enjoyed the ability to upload feedback to wikis and responses to projects.  That is when it 'hit' me that this is a web 2.0 technology!  Now with the added use of Sloodle this can be even more useful.

I wonder what will be the Web 3.0 technology...things are fast changing and we as educators must ensure that the gap is not widening between ourselves and our students.  This has certainly been my experience in the classroom.  I have found that more and more effective educators who make use of the technology that students are using get more from them in terms of interactions and collaboration.

I think I have said enough...but I am so excited about this.

Peace
LeRoy

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PeterT
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« Reply #1 on: September 18, 2008, 06:17:55 AM »

Hi LeRoy - thank you for introducing yourself and explaining your interest in the schommunity.   :)

Have you been involved in the work that some folk from Nottingham have been doing on SchomeBase or how did you find out about the Schommunity?
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leroyh
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« Reply #2 on: September 18, 2008, 09:43:17 AM »

I found out about the community some time back when I was looking through the Moodle modules saw a module bloc which was created by Andrews which made reference to Sloodle.  The site also led me to Open University and their research in a number of areas.  However, I was reacquainted with the work by one of my PhD supervisors here at Nottingham.  He felt that I needed to join the community since it seemingly had some bearings on my research area.

I have not been involved in the work on Schombase but will be willing to contribute.

Much thanks for the welcome
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PeterT
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« Reply #3 on: September 18, 2008, 08:27:39 PM »

OK - that helps ...

The Schome Park Programme (SPP) is probably the bit of our activity that is of most relevance to your interests.

Phase 3 of the SPP ended at the end of May 08. We are currently analysing and writing up data (and there are a very small number of students helping us with aspects of that who still have access to Schome Park - and who are still active in the forum/wiki). 

We have not decided what our next moves are re the SPP - but will be starting to think about that as we clear the backlog of data analysis etc that we are currently engaged with ...

Activity on SchomeBase (our island in the Main Grid) is something we are keen to extend (and refocus so that it is clearly open to everyone rather than feeling rather OU centric, which I fear it has been for a month or two now) - plans are afoot to make some changes on SchomeBase (and OpenLife) which should help with this ...

PeterT
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Amba SParker
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« Reply #4 on: September 19, 2008, 04:53:55 AM »

Hi Leroyh

Welcome, and thank you for the introduction. Your work sounds really interesting, I look forward to your involvement with Schome research. Do you have any specific ideas for things you’d like to try in collaboration with Schome people?
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An¡mus
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« Reply #5 on: September 19, 2008, 04:09:55 PM »


Hello welcome, nice display picture lol
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leroyh
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« Reply #6 on: September 21, 2008, 08:12:35 AM »

Thank you Amber for the offer.  In fact, I would like to find out more about more about the obstacles that were encountered during the experimental stage  and how will these be dealt with to minimize them in the future?

I have much to learn and I am really passionate on helping young people who are at risk.

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Amba SParker
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« Reply #7 on: September 21, 2008, 08:46:56 AM »

Hi LeRoy

Peter is writing a paper at the moment which will give an insightful overview of our activities. Other team members are involved in writing up research as well, which will focus on different aspects of our work.

The Schome learners have been involved in a lot of creative / collaborative work. It is possible to get some idea by looking through the wiki, but there is a lot of information there, so it takes time. Perhaps a look at the last newsletter My Schome will give you a feel for the place.

This is taken from the main page of our wiki:
You can download a copy of the MySchome magazine either as a pdf file (17Mb) or as a zip file (11Mb). This edition includes items on Archaeology, Schome in Space, Poetry, Sailing in SP, Trixxie's tips, Character design and much more ... (Mars is to be congratulated on pulling together a fantastic first edition - nice one Mars)

The Schome Park Page also gives details of activities, and of course there is the Schome blog.

The main obstacle in my view has been managing expansion. Literally hundreds of new people joined the Schome Initiative in a very short space of time, and I feel that sometimes we had some problems in ensuring shared understanding of overall aims and ethos. We are in the process of fixing this! Are there any particular risks that you are worried about? Would love to learn more about your research ideas.

I too could be described as being passionate about the learning experiences of young people (and older people! :)), and get particularly excited about the potential of technology to help. :)

Your interest areas overlap with mine and those of most others involved in the project. Feel free to use any of the forum boards you can see to ask specific questions or start new discussions.

 :)

(P.S. I like the display picture too  lol)
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leroyh
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« Reply #8 on: September 21, 2008, 09:46:53 AM »

I am aware that the SCHOME initiative is not school not home.  However, I will like to explore the possibilities of collaborating on an effort to meet the needs of excluded students of the k12 secondary school age.  Are there anyone presently researching that particular area?  If so I will like to touch base with them to see how our work can be compared.
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Topper Schomer
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« Reply #9 on: September 21, 2008, 06:32:33 PM »

I am aware that the SCHOME initiative is not school not home.  However, I will like to explore the possibilities of collaborating on an effort to meet the needs of excluded students of the k12 secondary school age.  Are there anyone presently researching that particular area?  If so I will like to touch base with them to see how our work can be compared.

There have been 'school' groups in the SPP before and the one of those that worked best (in my eyes anyway) was a after school club. The thing that caused the most conflict, in my eyes, was when 'work' was set. As a learner myself i would be interested to see how it would work and it would challenge my own conceptions of excluded people as I have some bad experiences with people who have been later excluded. But in short i think if you plan people of any description into schome or second life it would probably be best to do it volenteraly espessaly if they are coming into a fairly established community.

Anyway, Hello and welcome :D

Topper
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PeterT
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« Reply #10 on: September 22, 2008, 05:41:37 AM »

I am aware that the SCHOME initiative is not school not home.  However, I will like to explore the possibilities of collaborating on an effort to meet the needs of excluded students of the k12 secondary school age.  Are there anyone presently researching that particular area?  If so I will like to touch base with them to see how our work can be compared.

The long answer:
We are dropping 'not school - not home' as part of our tagline - cos it confuses folk into thinking that (a) we are only interested in learners of school age and (b) that we are only interested in learners in school - schome will be a cradle to grave education system - and will be genuinely inclusive.

So we are very much interested in folk who have been excluded.
We were in negotiation with a couple of PRUs (Pupil Referral Units) but failed to get any students into the first three phases of the Schome Park Programme. There were a very small number of home educated learners in Phases 2 and 3 - but I have no idea whether they were home educating for philosophical or pragmatic reasons ...

The short answer:
Not sure we can help much in terms of direct contact - but it is an area of potential interest for the future ...

Alternative thought:
The Innovation Unit was running a number of projects which included PRUs - part of their interest in the Schome Park Programme related to the possibilities of supporting 'disenfranchised students'. Might be worth checking out the Innovation Unit website for leads ... (though nothing there specifically related to virtual worlds and excluded learners as far as I am aware).

PS This is moving away from being an Introduction - maybe we should carry on the conversation in a new topic in the Schome Discussions board?
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