Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Into the 2nd week already

If I really were modeling student behavior, I should have posted sooner. So far I have assembled more resources and links for week 4 on writing feedback and made more notes. Growing like Topsy the file grows longer and increasingly disorganized. Hala is giving me very useful feedback, but I need more. That is the pitfall of taking a puzzle without sufficient data to solve it as my topic and making the resulting session my search for solutions. Ideas I have and resources that should be useful researched as best I can - but no way of knowing without test subjects. Dicey as a project, good thing neither hiring nor tenure - let alone fame or even infamy - hang on the enterprise. Makes it more exciting though. Besides this project goes forth not to rework the known but with purpose: helping overloaded and overworked teachers teaching over-sized writing classes with limited resources.

So, otherewise, how has EVO been going? I missed the 1st synchronous session for Collaborative Writing @ WiZiQ but caught the transcript online. Mostly greetings and futzing around with equipment and tools not working as hoped (but surely expected). Tips & Tricks' Sunday session, also in WiZiQ, went better but still beset by similar mishaps. Becoming a Webhead met in Tapped In for an orientation tour of the "facility." Well organized and well done - the group's long experience shows. I was already registered in both - WiZiQ last year & Tapped In much earlier - but had to reactivate passwords, showing how much (little) I've used them. No doubt that says more about my learning curve than it does about the tools.

Will I use them more now? I keeping hoping. I am more likely to use Tapped In because of the orientation.

Did I complete Week 1 assignments? Sort of. Almost. At the moment I can't even remember what they were or how many I did not quite get to.

BaW: forum Wk 1 readings were old hat - overview / intro / basics for online learning & teaching - covered many times in online facilitator training. No doubt necessary starting point but one already visited. Ditto the YG assignment. The coming weeks' readings look more interesting and less traveled.

Other than introductions and a list of too many questions that no one has posted complete answers to, I am not even sure what the T & T assignments were. Not news anywhere that David is not organized. Too bad the new minions are not more useful - and that David is not better at delegating. Didn't get message posted to VoiceThread. On tool overload by now.

Collaborative Writing: introductions on YG, blog (more introductions, background, research interests, upload images). YG & blog ►►varieties of the collaborative writing experience.

Technical problems: I had to uninstall Skype. Blue screen issues advising me uninstall any/all new software. Dennis, the owner of this loaner laptop had installed Skype, then uninstalled it but inadvertently left some files behnd. That might have been the source of the problem. I am reluctant to try again on this computer. Other: the mic on my headset may either not be working or working off and on. I won't be able to do Second Life sessions because it requires DSL.

Week 2 Assignments ►► (this may help me keep track)
  • BaW - Text and voice synchronous communication tools: Tapped In, Yahoo Messenger and Skype in Worldbridges; download & install YM & Skype; create Buddy list for BaW participants (so many of them); attend & comment on live presentation; readings & forum discussion; create virtual office in Tapped In (done); answer questions of the week.
  • Collaborative Writing - word processing & collaborative Writing using Word & Track Changes; 2 readings; collaborative project in pairs: one to draft & one to revise collaborative writing; attend live session (where?)
  • Tips & Tricks - this week is David's Second Life week. Theme of the week is teaching in virtual environments & Native Speaker contact. Teaching tool links to explore, discuss? Wix.com, Sliderocket.com, Sharedtalk.com, Kantalk.com. Tool & app overload. Definitely!

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