Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Summary of the week of the 20th September

I'm rather late with my summary of last week. I've been off to a conference enjoying myself, and talking about you guys :) I would like to welcome Sebastian Panakal - he is working his way through the course so drop along to his blog and say 'hello'.

Jane is setting up her consultancy business and thinking a lot about how she can develop online networks; what online communities to access, and how to leverage technology....a lot of things for her to consider over the next few weeks. Carole has written a very detailed description of how she is facilitating the ePortfolio community she has set up along with the tools she is using. Jean has been reflecting on how she has engaged with Twitter. Folke is just relived he has got rid of the chipmunk in his system. Meantime, Willie is questioning the value of technology, feeling that it drives or restrains what we do rather than the other way around.

Cultural competency
Jillian has started thinking about cultural competency and looking for resources that will help her identify what she needs to know ie dealing with the feeling that she doesn't know what she doesn't know. Matt has come up with a practical list of things to consider when working online with people of other cultures. Kim has been talking about her experience of cultural differences between two apparently culturally similar countries, New Zealand and Australia. On the other hand, Malcolm is feeling pessimistic about the whole issue believing that being "aware of your own assumptions" is a lot easier said than done.

I am thinking that cultural competency in the online environment would be a good topic to explore in the mini conference. So if you're interested in thinking about this, let me know...I have a couple of people who I can recommend as speakers for this topic.

Last week we had a great discussion about your assignments, and spent some time looking at what is required for the mini conference. The recording of the discussion can be found here. The key points were:
  • your event can be synchronous or asynchronous;
  • your role in your event is to facilitate, not to be the speaker. So if you planning on facilitating a synchronous event, you'll need to arrange a speaker or speakers;
  • the topic must be of interest to participants and relevance to the topics we have been exploring in the course.
Please let me know on the email group or here on this blog if you have any queries.

Second Life
We also had a great meeting with KerryJ learning about how to use Second Life for facilitating online - recording here. Kerry has kindly offered to take any one who is interested on a road trip into Second Life. I am thinking of scheduling this for early next week. Please let me know if you're interested in coming with us. If you do want to come, you will need to set up an account and download Second Life onto your computer. Sarah

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