Are you ready to grow? What's holding you back?

Are you ready to grow?    What's holding you back?

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Moodle and more!

I am constantly discovering new benefits to this free opensource software!

My school is scheduled to go through its next accreditation in 2010. For all high school teachers who have gone through this process, you know it's not too early to start! I was recently made the chair of the steering committee, although an honor, I am fully aware of the great amount of responsibility and work this means.

This was my idea, I'd love some feedback and suggestions! In order to organize all of the committees involved; instruction, curriculum, assessment, leadership, resources and community, I thought I might use Moodle. I was thinking of using the online class option and putting all the committees that I set up on Moodle as a class. The chair would be the teacher of the class and could create assignments and discussions for their members. I would set deadlines for all of the classes. For example, I might require the assessment committee to have examples of formative assessment practices from all subject areas by this June. The chair or teacher would then present the format and requirements to the members and assign them each a subject to research and report back. The chair could use the blogging on Moodle to have discussions with all the members about their progress, I could also visit these to give support and guidance. By the end, not only do I have evidence of the final product, but I have a record of the process and growth.

I confess that I have an ulterior motive here. One of the goals I believe the faculty at my school need to improve on is communication and collaboration. We seldom work together on things for our school or our students. Although people will tell me its because of time constraints, I also feel it is because of a lack of training and experience in collaboration. It is so important that we teach our students to communicate and collaborate with each other and those around the world, yet how can we teach it if we don't know it ourselves? So, my hope in this process, is that the teachers will grow in three ways, one they will value the process of accreditation, second they will experience the benefits of communicating and collaboration and third they will become well experienced in the use of Moodle and blogs that they might transfer that to their own classrooms.

3 comments:

dancingkaren said...

Sharon,
Great idea - to use Web 2.0 tools for collaborating for NEASC. The accreditation team visits my high school this spring! I am the chairperson of the Mission Committee. What an adventure. And they'd love your idea!
Let's skype sometime.
I was a late registree to Jeff's class. I'll see you in second world this weekend.
Karen

Jeff Utecht said...

Great idea! Here's the other added benefit. Once you have all your committees go through this process (which is well thought out I might add) they will have also experiences Moodle for themselves as a learning tool. From there hopefully they'll start to see how it can be used in their classrooms as a learning tool with students. Very sneaker Sharon!

Let me know if I can help you. I've been running Moodle for 5 years now. My current schools installation is at http://sasoc.saschinaonline.org

Pat said...

Sharon - I agree this is a great idea. This is exactly the right approach to educate others about the usefulness of Web 2.0 tools all while addressing your needs. I believe the only way the technology use will spread is through this type of utilization. Good luck with the committee.

Pat