Online Connections

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Introductory Presentation


Student Survey

Please Take This Student Technology Use Survey

The Goals of Online Connections

The goal of Online Connections is to provide students with the technological resources and skills to facilitate:
  • connections to the local, national, and global community.
  • connections to the tools and habits of mind for life-long learning.
  • connections to the skills and practices valued in the professional world.

In order to accomplish these goals, students will engage in a professional participatory culture that includes the following web 2.0 applications:
  • Blogs
  • Wikis
  • Podcasts
  • Learning Network (Ning)
  • Social bookmarking and annotation
  • Collaborative productivity suites
  • Digital video creation

Throughout this course, enduring understandings (21st century literacies) will be highlighted and refined.

Collaborative Simulation

Students will engage in a collaborative simulation with the Korea International School in South Korea. Through this real-life simulation, students will learn how to harness online applications to learn, collaborate, organize, and produce.

National Educational Technology Standards for Students

Online Connections meets the benchmarks of all six of the National Educational Technology Standards for Students.

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Essential Questions

  1. How has the evolution of Web 2.0 technologies impacted the reality of communication, collaboration, and the creation of content of value?
  2. How can technology users safeguard intellectual property and online identity?
  3. How has the evolution of Web 2.0 technologies impacted the form and function of the democratic process?
  4. How can technology be used to network professionally and connect users to learning resources?
  5. How has the nature of work and learning changed with the evolution of technology, globalization, and shifting demographics?

Enduring Understandings - 21st Century Literacies

  • Play — the capacity to experiment with one’s surroundings as a form of problem-solving
  • Performance — the ability to adopt alternative identities for the purpose of improvisation and discovery
  • Simulation — the ability to interpret and construct dynamic models of real-world processes
  • Appropriation — the ability to meaningfully sample and remix media content
  • Multitasking — the ability to scan one’s environment and shift focus as needed to salient details.
  • Distributed Cognition — the ability to interact meaningfully with tools that expand mental capacities
  • Collective Intelligence — the ability to pool knowledge and compare notes with others toward a common goal
  • Judgment — the ability to evaluate the reliability and credibility of different information sources
  • Transmedia Navigation — the ability to follow the flow of stories and information across multiple modalities
  • Networking — the ability to search for, synthesize, and disseminate information
  • Negotiation — the ability to travel across diverse communities, discerning and respecting multiple perspectives, and grasping and following alternative norms.

* Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture: Media Education for the 21st Century Henry Jenkins

Buzz Words

Fair Use
Intellectual Property
Social Networking
Online Safety
Social Bookmarking & Annotation
Web 2.0
Digital Storytelling

Participatory Culture

We define Participatory Culture* as one:
  1. With relatively low barriers to artistic expression and civic engagement
  2. With strong support for creating and sharing one’s creations with others
  3. With some type of informal mentorship whereby what is known by the most experienced is passed along to novices
  4. Where members believe that their contributions matter
  5. Where members feel some degree of social connection with one another (at the least they care what other people think about what they have created).

* Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture: Media Education for the 21st Century Henry Jenkins

Forms of participatory culture

  • Affiliations — memberships, formal and informal, in online communities centered around various forms of media (such as Facebook, message boards, MMGOs, Second Life, or MySpace).
  • Expressions — producing new creative forms (such as digital sampling, skinning and modding, fan videomaking, fan fiction writing, zines, mash-ups).
  • Collaborative Problem-solving — working together in teams, formal and informal,to complete tasks and develop new knowledge (such as through wikis, alternative reality gaming, spoiling).
  • Circulations — Shaping the flow of media (such as podcasting, blogging).

* Confronting the Challenges of Participatory Culture: Media Education for the 21st Century Henry Jenkins

The Four Cs of Online Communities