Collaboration is a funny thing. As you may know, I train teachers at the moment and I would say currently, 90% of my days are used training on using the VLE. We talk about sharing and collaborating all of the time. Teachers think it sounds like a great idea, but who’s going to start it?
We are a large authority, I believe 2nd behind Kent, but collaboration across our schools isn’t great at the moment. Is it because teachers don’t want to? Is it because they don’t know how? Not sure. I tend to work with ICT teachers and people that have already been ‘won over’ by technology, so maybe my audience is a little biased, but even so, they still worry about sharing being time consuming.
Within our VLE, we do have a shared area that can house content created by teachers, but it is still very limited. If/when this takes off, it will be great, but is there a quick win I can achieve? I believe so.
Through my job, and more importantly, through Twitter, I am finding tonnes of useful websites and resources that need to be shared. Have I used all of them? Of course not, but I now know about them. Most are stored on my Delicious account for sorting later, but at least they are there. So if I find storing websites useful, maybe others will too? Imagine the power if all 440 of our primary schools shared websites amongst each other? To be honest, if 10 of them shared, it will be a good start!
So that’s where Hampshire Delicious comes in. I’ve started the account and it’s currently going through the management team to check they are on board, but if they’re not? I’ll push it anyway. It’ll be harder, but it will work for those that want it to.
The key I believe is not just in standardised tagging (KS2? Key Stage 2? KS 2?) but with the notes element. This will be extremely useful for teachers to see what the site is about rather than them having to wade through it to explore.
At the time of writing, it has 12 websites on it. 2 of those being guidance notes or a video of how to save bookmarks. By the end of the week I want 50. By then I should be ready to start launching it. Will it work? Will it change the way teachers find websites and resources? Will they see it as another thing to do? Who knows. But if I don’t try it, we’ll never know.
So…what do you think my problems will be? What will be the main benefits? Would it be something you would want to use/add to? I’ll hopefully be writing the communication to schools about it before Easter.
Just because it is a Hampshire Delicious account doesn’t mean it can’t be shared wider. The username and password is there for all to see on the guidance, so feel free to add a site or two (maybe your blog?) to it. I trust my network to use it wisely.
Why not check it out so far…
If you want to see a huge Delicious resource, check out @simonhaughton’s account: I want to emulate this, but with notes about each site to help teachers a bit further.
ps. I sort of apologise for the Vanilla Ice-inspired title to this post, but hey…it made me smile.