Coming up for Air part b

November 5, 2009 § Leave a comment

Of late, I finally think that education is beginning to see the benefit of greater school collaboration. Whether school federations, NCLS cross school cohorts or lead practitioner groups, there appears to be a greater emphasis on dispersed conversation. Despite the growing formal CPD opportunities, I still gain more influential strategic and teaching input from my Personal Learning Network (Blogs, Twitter predominantly). Surely education can do better?

That said, face to face communication and conversation is vitally important. Since taking up the post at Hamble College, Gideon Williams has been one of the most supportive colleagues I have worked with. On Thursday we discussed a number of key IT services issues and compared the relative solutions offered by our schools. We also looked and modelled a managed VM solutions, linking together services that could be offered by SchoolsICT and elearning4schools. Of course as technology matures, the solutions available to answer, what appears to be fairly static educational needs, diversifies. Managed VM solutions are just one such solution. 

The second part of the conversation involve exchanging Moodle resources and the discussion to look at developing resources for the new ICT qualifications in 2010. I wonder if there are many other ICT HODs / Directors of E-Learning that would share content through moodle? One thought was to create a Moodle development site on which to develop the course, with staff exporting and importing the course to their own moodle as required? In the process of sharing resources and courses, Gideon demonstrated how he had deployed glossaries to share Mp3s and a short description about the clip for Unit 22, rather than as a set of individual resource. I felt this was a simple and effective idea although I now wonder if they could also be displayed as a directory?.

 Finally Gideon solved one of my few gripes with Moodle, the two step process of moving resources and activities with the up and down arrows – replacing it with the ‘move thingy icon.’ In minutes we had downloaded and installed the ‘move thingy icon’ and activated it my profile. Now I can drag and drop resources and activities much more efficiently. Althought this was not a siginificant issue for me personally, I am confident that a number of staff will appreciate the tool.

An administrator needs to turn the feature on, its under appearance / ajax and java script / untick disable ajax course editing. The per user, edit profiles and turn on used advanced web features. Now we can move items swiftly. Second, we have moved to the addvark theme, and finally lightbox works…. impressive.

So, when do you come up for air when you have a dual role? Should the requirement for half-term days be given in lieu? Should I trust and manage the IT services staff more effectively?

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