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Building Online Learning Communities

By Trena Noval, Barbara Bray
Meet the Authors

"How can best practices be supported in a successful online coaching and mentoring community?"
 Overview


 Understandings & Objectives


 Contents
Oakland Unified, CA


 At A Glance




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Oakland Unified, CA

Project Overview

In this coaching program, elementary and middle school worked with My eCoach to develop collaborative projects that extend the core curriculum.

Once school site goals were determined, teachers met in small groups and individually with their eCoach to develop and plan curriculum projects working both face-to-face and online in My eCoach’s learning community. Once projects were created, teachers took them into the classroom working with their eCoach to model best practices. Teachers were then brought together to discuss the outcomes of their projects and to share student work samples both in person and online.

Outcomes

•  
Published curriculum online for student’s use that extend the core curriculum (Language Arts, Science and History) and met California State Standards.
•    Increase in student’s research and Information literacy skills.
•    Effective use of computers in classrooms and in lab.
•    Opportunity for teachers to work together as collaborators to develop curriculum and share ideas and successes.


Curriculum Examples

Science and Math


What We Waste - Everyday we buy drinks that come in plastic bottles. What happens to those bottles after we are done with them? Where do they go? Middle School teacher Lesley Feikert was interested in having her students understand  how their own waste habits can effect the environment they live in now and in the future.

For one week she had her sixth grade science classes use the scientific process to conduct an experiment where tracked their bottle usages to gain knowledge in how to work with data and make graphs using excel that will help them to interpret scientific information.

The result was
that students gained an understanding of how to make the right decisions about what they use and what they do with it when they are done, and to help them understand how recycling and waste management can help to keep make their own home, communities and cities a better place to live.

Language Arts

Literary Review Podcasts - Looking for some good recommendations for summer reading? Two middle school Language Arts classes at Brewer Middle School created a series of audio literary reviews of books they read during this school year. Lisa Sindorf and Lourdes Bautista and a few of their seventh and eighth grade students take you on a summer reading adventure.
  • Reviewing Literature - Eight Grade Literary Audio reviews
  • Silent Reading Book Reviews - Each month, seventh graders in Ms. Sindorf’s Language Arts class complete at least one book during Silent Reading. Then, they reflect on their experiences reading the book and share their thoughts with their classmates.

Social Studies


The Gold Rush: An Exciting and Dangerous Time in History - Suan McDonnell and Jill Eccher’s 4th and 5th grade students at Jefferson Elementary School worked in teams to complete a series of activities where they became historical experts on the Gold Rush. As experts, these students taught fellow class members about the different aspects and characters of the Gold Rush by using their new gained knowledge about this important part of California history.


Visiting the Presidential Yacht, The Potomac - On April 27, 2006 Marie Stewart’s 5th grade class from Peralta Elementary School went for an educational ride on the historic presidential yacht called the Potomac. Marie used our new public blog feature to create a page for the pictures and podcast here students created on this trip.