Saturday, February 01, 2003

Well we're 1/2 an hour into today's proposed chat time and I'm the only one in the chat interface. Not sure what to do -- I've logged on a couple of times and see each "instance of me" appear in the chat interface as I do, but only me so far.

I've checked into the class conferencing software as well, but no sign of any of the gang. This is the most challenging aspect of the whole synchronous experience -- getting others to "play along" at the same time. At least in asynchronous environments one can post and respond at one' leisure. As those who've tried know, it takes two (or more) to chat synchronously ;-).

The next question is, how long do you hang around waiting for things to get under way? By my calculation, I'm now 32 minutes into the prescribed 120. I'll hang out for a while and hope that I encounter some "colleagues in cyberspace."

Picture of me as I look for colleagues from school on-line. Where are they?

Made it back from Minnesota in one piece. Less winter in the Great White North (Calgary) than there. Had two inches of snow on the ground on Friday morning in Minneapolis and returned to Calgary with no snow at all and temperatures of ~10 C/ 50 F. Gotta love those chinooks (warm westerlies that can and do warm temperatures by 30 or more degrees when they blow in over the Rockies).

Looking forward to a "neo-Luddite chat" with "Reading Review" colleagues in CTL 1799 this afternoon. We're going to consider the place that technology does and should play in education. Should be a good discussion.

Thursday, January 30, 2003

Greetings from Minneapolis.

This week I had the opportunity to work with educators in Minnetonka and Stewartville, MN while conducting Master's sessions on the SMART Board(TM) interactive whiteboard. Once again I've greatly enjoyed "interfacing" and working with these educators as we explored how to integrate technology and implement interactive whiteboard usage in the classroom.

On the academic front, I've found it very challenging to "stay connected" with classmates in CTL 1799 this week -- I've had some "connection issues" during this trip and have not been able to be as active with course work as I'd have liked. While on-line learning presents opportunities to stay connected from "anywhere" I'm finding -- as is often the case -- that "theory" and "practice" are two very different animals.

My group in CTL 1799 is attempting to come to terms with how we should best proceed in our efforts to explore "on-line communities" and how they work. Of course we are, by definition, an on-line community and I know that I'm struggling with how we as a group can work together and define and complete tasks. My experience with on-line education continues to give me "first-hand" experience of the challenges facing on-line students, and I hope this will ultimately make me a better "on-line educator."

As always, watch this space for updates.