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Teaching Hacks.com

How Do you Collaborate?

Collaboration in the present is unlike what might be typically construed as collaboration of the past (even a few years ago). When we look at education as a whole, are we collaborating as we would have in the past or using the tools of the present to embrace the future?

Here are a few points of comparison that I started, feel free to add your own.

Past

Present

Collaborating locally with a Team, Department, Committee or Family. Mass collaboration with loosely joined nodes creating innovations that could not have been created in the past (Wikipedia) without nationalization or internationalization of a cause. (War, Environmental Catastrophe)
Send emails, leave messages in mailboxes, or snail mail. Collaborative documents – Shared Documents (Google Docs), Real Time Shared Applications (Zoho Notebook) or wikis.
Leave phone messages. Instant messaging and/or Microblogging
School districts holding tightly to intellectual capital through. Open licenses that encourage redevelopment of intellectual capital like Creative Commons or Freedom-Driven licensing.
Network of tightly controlled memberships. Many social networks that are open to any other member joining.
Face to Face meetings. Face two face meetings, mixed with video/web conferencing, skypecasts or whatever works.
Top down mentality of superiority. Peer equality and co-creation.

Classroom 2.0

Steve Hargadon started Classroom 2.0 on Ning for

encouraging broader cooperation and dialog, and for mobilizing an army of folks who are having success using the tools of collaborative technology in their classrooms.

I like the idea of a central social edublogger network pulling together people in order to help each other. I remember that Josie Fraser started an Edublogger Frappr map a few years ago with a bit of social networking.

Classroom 2.0 has lots of potential, with tools to help channel voices for those who choose to contribute. Take a look for yourself. There were about 55 members when I last looked, but it will be the contributors that make the community.

The other component, that I was less thrilled about, was the Classroom 2.0 wiki. I like the idea, don’t get me wrong. I guess I’m just frustrated.

Each of these projects is coming from a different approach, but with similar goals.

http://eduwikipedia.pbwiki.com/
http://goodbaduglyoftheinternet.wikispaces.com
http://www.curriki.org

I’m just hoping that the Classroom 2.0 wiki will sustain interest by a wider community of contributors.

Using Discussion Boards to Share Information With Teachers Around The Globe

Free Services:http://www.nicenet.org/ -NiceNet
http://www.activeboard.com/ -Active Board
http://www.bravenet.com/webtools/ -Bravenet

The requirement for all these sites is that you must create a free account with them to use their service. Each site offers different features some have photo sharing, document sharing, and
calendars.

What is a Discussion Board?

A discussion board is an online discussion area, where community members can exchange open messages with everyone on the Internet. You can post a question or post answers or comments to those questions.

What Can You Do With A Discussion Board?

  1. Create a an online community
  2. Create public or restricted discussion boards
  3. Ask a question of the community or post responses to questions.
  4. Share favourite resources with the community.
  5. Discuss current trends or topics from the news.
  6. Share new ideas with the community.
  7. Facilitate communication within the community.

I have created this 3-Page guide (PDF, 218 kb) that should help teachers through the process of creating a discussion board.

Using Online Groups to Share Information With Teachers Around The Globe

Free Services:

http://groups.msn.com/ MSN Groups
http://groups.yahoo.com/ Yahoo Groups
http://groups.google.com/ Google Groups

The requirement for all these sites is that you must create a free account with them to use their service. Each site offers different features some have photo sharing, document sharing, link sharing and calendars.

What is an Online Group?

When you create a group with any of these services, you will get an email address for the group for example:

nunnavut@yahoogroups.com

Other educators can go in and subscribe to the group through their account.

When any member of the group wants to send an email to the entire group, they send an email to “nunavut@yahoogroups.com� and all members of the group get the same email. They can then reply to the email, and again everyone in the group gets the reply. Instant community emailing.

Educators could also have their email from their yahoo group forwarded to any email address they want. So they don’t have to log in to the service to receive and send these emails. There are also many other features that can be used in groups.


What Can You Do With A Group?

  1. Create public or restricted groups
  2. Keep in communication with educators from anywhere in the globe through email
    communication
  3. Send newsletters and plan group events
  4. Some services offer photo sharing
  5. Some services offer file sharing
  6. Some services offer chat
  7. Some services offer polls
  8. Some services offer shared favourite links

I have created this Online Groups.pdf(PDF, 234 kb) that should help teachers through the process of creating an online group.

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-Noncommercial-Share Alike 2.5 Canada License.