Friday, 20 January 2017

Collaborative Genius Hour

What will it look like?

So this week I took the time to begin looking at what are good qualities of an online learning opportunity or blended class. Kyle shared a post on our Google+ page around 7 Tips to Plan for Effective Blended Learning. This site demonstrated some great tips around the layout and developing questions to guide an educator on how to take a face-to-face unit and adapt it for an online/digital world. I specifically enjoyed the way it was laid out because it doesn't tie you to a specific type of curriculum, only guides you into the forum of what you should be thinking about. Ashley tweeted about another great article on the 6 Essential Tips for Planning an Effective Online Course. This article broke it down to more of a unit based, step by step outline, talking about how to plan, organize, and demonstrate how the expectations should be laid out. These two articles are similar but give a nice perspective that I was able to begin my thought process about where I wanted to go with this assignment of developing an online/blended learning course.

A quick visual of these concepts are put together in an awesome tweet from Jenn
Courtesy of Jenn StewartMitchell

What do I want to do?

So far this week Jorie and I have been working towards creating a group around genius hour. We are excited about creating a program that can be used for multi grade level, and essentially work for a variety of inquiry based concepts.
I am a big fan of inquiry based learning because it gives the students the opportunity to demonstrate their passions and interests in a creative and positive way.  This article on a Davenport Boys High School is a great example of what can happen when we guide students learning in the direction they want to take it.  

Jorie came to me very excited about Genius Hour and how we should/could incorporate this not only into this class but implement it at our school level, while working on a buddy system for our different grade levels (Jorie is a grade 2 and I teach 7/8). Her energy is hard to turn away from so obviously I was on board.

Who else is on board?

Then with a quick question to our Google+ Community, within 12 hours we had a group of 6 people on board for developing modules and an online course around Genius Hour. The group consists of Adam Krammer, Danielle Maley, Jenn Huber, Lorraine Wagner, Jorie Gilroy-Beck and myself. We have already planned our first Zoom meeting and have a collaboration document rolling. We are all very excited to get started on this assignment, I for one and thrilled about the opportunity to create something that I know will be such a valuable tool for me and my colleagues in the future.

Genius Hour?

If you are wondering about what Genius Hour is all about here is a video that gives a quick overview: