Rethinking Learning
conversations about the future of teaching and learning
Barbara Bray
be creative, innovate, take risks, unlearn to learn

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Tips for Building Trust in an Online Community

By Barbara Bray      June 7, 2010 -- 09:00 PM
There usually is one manager of an online community. The manager can be called a community manager, a team manager, or an eCoach. The members of your community will need to trust you to feel safe in your community. Here are seven tips to ensure a trusting relationship with the members of your community.

1. Personalize your Community

Ask your community members to fill out their profile, add a picture, and share information about themselves. Encourage members to introduce themselves right away in the discussion forum. Personalize all communications you have with each member. If you ...   more...

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Determining Value of Community

By Barbara Bray      April 27, 2010 -- 08:07 PM
Ning is ditching their free service and according to Jon Dale this is a brilliant move. Educators and non-profits are ranting all over the Internet about how this move is going to destroy all the work they have been doing for so long. Just think of all the free networks set up for educators. Ning is going to provide a paid option for educators and non-profits that is supposed to be affordable. Ning has grown so large that their premium users have suffered.

The economy is affecting everyone plus big and small companies including Web 2.0 and social media. Facebook is under attack for its privacy ...   more...
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The Way Free is Going

By Barbara Bray      April 15, 2010 -- 08:49 PM
Ning offers online networks and the ability for members to set up their own communities. Millions of people have used Ning for free. I wasn't even aware that there are premium versions. TechCrunch just announced that Ning’s Bubble Burst - no more Free networks and cut 40% of its staff. What does this mean for you if you are on several networks (communities) in Ning?

Currently, Ning’s premium options include support (which has a $10/month and $100/month options for different service levels); Custom domains ($5 a month); Extra storage and bandwidth ($10...   more...
Comments: 1   Last Comment By Teresa Roebuck  April 15, 2010 -- 09:16 PM

Technology's Impact on Learning

By Barbara Bray      February 14, 2010 -- 10:14 AM
Technology may not make the difference in how a student learns. What makes a difference is the learning environment: how the teacher designs learning, and how they use and integrate technology appropriately. In some cases, maybe no technology is appropriate. In-class discussions may work better. Think-Pair-Share where students are looking into each others’ eyes works well and may increase their self-esteem. Maybe going outside or on field trips. However, there are wonderful opportunities for technology where there is no access to valuable resources.

Add video conferencing for a field trip ...   more...
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Participating Online

By Barbara Bray      February 10, 2010 -- 06:41 PM
What does it mean to participate online? I asked a few of my teacher friends this who are more of the boomer age category. Many told me they really only felt comfortable with email. Some of them joined Facebook and have added friends. They usually do not comment on status updates from their friends. They send them a personal message.

At first, I thought that feeling comfortable only emailing instead of posting or commenting is only with boomers, but I am finding that people of all ages use different social media and participate in online learning communities for different purposes and in ...   more...
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Building Trust in Online Communities

By Barbara Bray      February 9, 2010 -- 08:10 AM
Mutual trust is a shared belief that you can depend on each other to achieve a common purpose. [How to Build Trust]

Have you joined a lot of online communities? If so, which ones are you an active member? Why? Could trust be one part of it? Each community is designed around a purpose or shared vision. If each member realizes their personal goals are in sync with the goals or purpose of the community or their goals helped design the community goals, then each person will work to keep the community going. When there is no purpose, the community falls apart. [Purpose in Learning Communities...   more...
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Generations Use of Internet Explained

By Barbara Bray      December 3, 2009 -- 08:21 AM
From the report, Generations Online 2009 from Pew Internet and American Life, they found that over half of the adult population ages 18-44 are involved in internet use.

Generations Explained

It's interesting to find that the biggest increase in an age group is from the 70-75 year olds from 26% to 44% increase. I'm an older boomer who lives online and there are lots more like me. What does this report mean about the Gen X and Gen Y generations?

What I see is that more of all age groups are finding that the internet provides more for us now. It seems to me that in just two more years, social networking ...   more...
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What is eCoaching?

By Barbara Bray      April 6, 2009 -- 07:42 PM
You may think that eCoaching is online coaching. It is more than that. Are you a trainer, a mentor, and/or coach? You can provide online coaching support for others if you determine their purpose for being online. This is not as easy as it may sound.

When you look at your organization and where you fit in it, is it working? Has everyone defined their learning goals? Are they working toward them? eCoaching supports each person involved to help them meet their learning goals. This takes planning. You can do this alone with an eCoach in social networks if you build a network of people who want to ...   more...
Comments: 1   Last Comment By small Sara Zimmerman  April 7, 2009 -- 10:51 AM