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Learning Network Manager Thread, Will this work? in Technical; Hi. I'm hoping you can give me some advice. We've got an idea for a free web resource for schools ...
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    Will this work?

    Hi. I'm hoping you can give me some advice. We've got an idea for a free web resource for schools that goes something like this

    1. A school registers and their school name, contact email address and web address are posted on our website
    2. Other schools search our website to find an appropriate school which they then email with a question
    3. The first school receives the question, pupils research an answer and they provide this on their own school website (along with the question)

    Over time, a school should end up with a single page on their school site that has a list of Q&As, that they can add to as new questions come in.

    What I'm wondering is what might be the obstacles to making this happen. Do schools have the competency/ capacity to make these sort of changes to their own websites?

    Would class teachers be able to do this themselves or would they be reliant on ICT staff?

    We're obviously not going to get all schools involved - a degree of IT proficiency is required - but it would be good to hear what you think the pitfalls might be, before we fall into the pits!

    Any advice gratefully received. Thanks.

    For more on us to show we're genuine, please Google 'Global Learning Network South West' (can't give the URL, first post!).

    Best wishes.
    Ben Hartshorn
    Regional Co-ordinator
    Global Learning Network South West

    Look Out Learning Community Interest Company
    Shoe Factory, Banking Court, Crewkerne TA18 7HN
    01460 78731

    Registered in England and Wales Company no 6413338

    Funded by DFID - leading the British Government's fight against world poverty

  2. #2

    Little-Miss's Avatar
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    Really sorry, not meaning to sound rude, but i think i've missed the point..

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    tmcd35's Avatar
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    You e-mail your local school and ask any question. The school gets the kids to research the answer for you on the internet...

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    Jamman960's Avatar
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    Will have a look at your site at some point, I think I kind of get what your aiming for but don't quite understand why each school would have the answers posted on their own websites - I'm guessing your looking for in depth answers to test questions? ie "in 200 words or less explain moores law"?

    maybe it'd be better to have schools sign up, pick or post a question and then submit the answer to your website where the best answer is accepted?

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    Little-Miss's Avatar
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    still dont understand why...

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    localzuk's Avatar
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    This is in the wrong forum I think? LNM is a specific product, rather than a general query forum.

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    I'll try again!

    Sorry to be vague, but I didn't want to give away all the details at this stage. To expand, the idea is that each school will become an 'expert' in a particular issue, so they will be receiving questions specifically about their topic.

    We work in the area of global learning, so we're hoping that schools from around the world (particularly poor countries) will get involved. If it works well, a school in Japan might email a school in Kenya to ask them about the Great Rift Valley. The answer they get will come from students just like them, forming a connection they find in Wikipedia.

    I had hoped that the LNM forum might include those in schools responsible for ICT, including the school's web-presence, and so I'd get an insight into how practical this might be to achieve in schools (or, perhaps, if something similar is already going on).

    Sorry if I'm in the wrong place - any signposting to the right location would be great!
    Ben

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    FN-GM's Avatar
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    I still dont get it really.

    Why would schools do this? All it seems to do is create work.

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BenHartshorn View Post
    We've got an idea for a free web resource for schools
    Right, have I got the right idea here: you want to write a web app that connect pupils in schools around the globe. Each school has an area (or maybe areas) of expertise, maybe related to something near their school. You want some way of pupils at a particular school to get asked about their expert subject, and for a group of pupils to provide an answer. Access for pupils at a particular school is mediated through a single teacher or other member of staff at each school.

    If a group of pupils is providing an answer, how do you go about letting them collaberativly provide answers? Do they all need a separate login, or do they produce text and email it to their teacher who then cut-and-pastes it as the given answer?

    How do you bootstrap your site - how do you make sure than, on launch, there are enough interesting areas of expertise so that everyone will be able to find things out?

    If this site has global reach, how are you going to provide tools to let people who speak different languages ask each other questions and answer each other? Will you provide a translation service? Could translations be provided by pupils as part of their language courses?

    How does this idea fit in to the curriculum of any particular country - for instance, what part of the UK national curriculum, and for which subject, does it cover?

    Most school websites are brochure sites - the front pages aren't neccesarily going to have space to hold random curriculum stuff. I should think a separate website provided by yourselves could host the content that schools could then link to as they wish, plus of course you could provide an RSS feed and/or HTML blocks for people to stick on their own websites.

    --
    David Hicks

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    Quote Originally Posted by BenHartshorn View Post
    If it works well, a school in Japan might email a school in Kenya to ask them about the Great Rift Valley. The answer they get will come from students just like them, forming a connection they find in Wikipedia.
    Why wouldn't they ask Wikipedia in the first place? Every kid I know does this already...

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    dhicks's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by powdarrmonkey View Post
    Why wouldn't they ask Wikipedia in the first place?
    I think the emphasis is meant to be on children answering questions rather than asking them - there's only one canonical Wikipedia page, once a topic is covered or question is answered then it's done, you have to figure out what you're going to get future classes to do. The Wiki model might hold better for easy document editing, but if this is intended to be a properly global kind of thing then children in,say, Kenya might have a rather intermittent Internet connection more suited to email than Wiki-editing.

    --
    David Hicks

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    powdarrmonkey (25th February 2010)

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    GrumbleDook's Avatar
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    It seems pretty evident that the goal of the task is not the answering of the question so much, but the process of sharing and collaboration between students in different schools and countries. It might be with speaking with Liz at the British Council about this. Also have a search on twitter for #edtalk , #edchat, #edtechroundup as many folk on there already work on international links.


    PS - Possibly it could be moved to the Educational Software forum as that would be more appropriate.

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    powdarrmonkey (25th February 2010)

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    Thanks - helpful, but will relocate!

    Your ideas have been helpful, thanks. Our aim is to foster collaboration and global linking, and also the development of skills such as researching personal responses (and a fair amount of geographical knowledge!).

    David is right, Wikipedia doesn't have that human component - this would be about what children make of a question. So, it may not be completely accurate (the teacher might need to moderate that), but for most kids, certainly at primary age, it would be exciting to receive a question from another country and be responsible for formulating an answer that they (and their friends and relatives) then see on the web.

    Thanks again for the ideas and suggestions!
    Ben

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