Users of Blackboard Collaborate
Let me explain to you how I'd use and "squeeze" Blackboard Collaborate for a whole year! :-)
I have been selected by PSMLA (Pennsylvania State Modern Language Association) and NECTFL (Northeast Conference on the Teaching of Foreign Languages) as a Sans Inc./Mead Fellow, leading an online professional development project about providing FREE training to World Language teachers on creative, immersive, authentic, and FUN ways to incorporate web 2.0 tools in the classroom. Teachers will be rewarded with Act48hs (similar to CEU) and other tech goodies for their active and successful participation in the project.
I am embedding the Prezi/Video I created about the project to give everyone a general idea of what this is all about. But, basically, the project has three parts: webinars in August, lesson plans and student products in the fall, forum discussions in the winter. The plan is (was) to use Elluminate/Wimba (now Blackboard Collaborate) for the webinars in August and, due to the small budget available, I am (was) going to subscribe to it for only one month (August) and use other sites (free) for the rest of the project.
As you can imagine, winning the 50-seat virtual environment for a whole year will add another dimension (not described) in the project. Teachers could use Blackboard to, indeed, "collaborate" with each other when learning about web 2.0 and designing their lesson plans. Some discussions towards the end could also be done LIVE, enhancing the learning/collaborative experience.
I am inviting the teachers participating in this online PD workshop, and others involved in it, to support this post...and add their own ideas to enhance the project! We would be THRILLED to use Blackboard Collaborate for the Sans Inc./Mead project. Also, I am scheduled to present about it at the Fall PSMLA conference in State College and at the Spring NECTFL conference in Baltimore. Teachers unable to attend these conferences could stll come, through Blackboard Collaborate, and help me present this
This project is an ambitious initiative to transform language teaching and learning by infusing emerging technologies into the curriculum. It is a unique opportunity to reach other world language teachers and help them enhance their competencies and expertise with 21st century technologies in the classroom.
It'd be so awesome for this project to be one of the winners! The timing couldn’t be better! Fingers crossed!
And thank you very much for considering this idea,
Silvina M Orsatti
NECTFL Sans Inc./Mead Leadership Fellow
"Digital Literacy is less about the tools and more about the thinking"