Thursday, February 19, 2009

Distance Learning for Teachers

We have an inservice planned in March and one of the activities we'll do is participate in some kind of distance learning experience. Some of our teachers have already dipped their toes into the "online course" pool, but this is a way for the whole faculty to check out the resources available for professional development outside of the traditional top-down model. I have created a page on our professional development wiki with some resources for them and I'm reposting them here for ya'll. You're welcome to use them freely:

One of the biggest trends we see in education is the development of Distance Learning. This means, the learner is not situated in a traditional classroom, with a teacher or even with other students. Most of the time, the learner is in front of a computer, sometimes learning interactively at the same time as a group of other students. Other times, they are all learning their own pace and in their own time.

Today, we will experience Distance Learning on our own. This requires the learner to be intrinsically motivated, because there is no one requiring you to make eye contact or look interested! You can often even skip to the parts that interest you!

Learner.Org (Annenberg Media) This site offers professional development across the curriculum. This is CONTENT SPECIFIC, not HOW TO TEACH. You can browse topics by grade and subject area. You will have to create a login, but after that the courses are free. You will be unable to complete most courses in their entirety, but can definitely learn a few things in our time allotted. If you're so inclined, you can even earn graduate credit!

Discovery Education
There is a new site called "Teacher Survival Central" that offers a lot in the way of new lesson ideas in video format. You can also view some of the professional development videos offered on the Discovery Education (Streaming) Web site here: Categories include:

Teaching Tips
Best Practices
Interactive Training (a good one!)
Project Demonstrations
Discovery Education Network.

Teacher Tube
This site hosts hundreds of videos related to teaching various subjects. Some you can use to learn from, some you can share with your classes. Check out the most viewed links, top rated, and featured videos on the home page.

Video On Demand/Podcasts/Handouts from National Conferences
National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) Video Clips from General Conference Speakers And then individual speaker highlights here: ItemNumber=149909&sn.ItemNumber=149439&tn.ItemNumber=149910
NAIS 2008 Conference Handouts
Over 150 handouts from one-hour workshops and three-hour workshops are currently posted.

National Educational Computing Conference 2008
You can view videos of various workshops and presentations at this year's conference. It's like you were there!

Image credit: HB's Photostream on Flickr (


Nancy said...

What a great resource! We have an in-school tech newsletter that this would be perfect for. I also have been meaning to try some of the PD resources in Discovery Education. Thank you for sharing.

Distance Learning said...

It's an excellent resource to get good information

Thank you very much for that !