My masters class question this week centres around the challenges of using a global Project Based Learning approach in the classroom. I am thinking this question will be so much easier to answer in about four weeks as I will be well into my own co-teaching across borders attempt by then!!!
One of the issues I was concerned about as my teaching partner and I began to set up this project was access to computers and web 2.0 tools to facilitate the collaboration and communication between the American and Canadian students. This has proved to be a non-factor. I am truly blessed to work in such an open and progressive thinking jurisdiction! I have had assistance from my tech department and approval from my administration team, as well as encouragement and support from my fellow staff members, known as my PLN Entourage .
What I have encountered so far in the beginning stages of our project is more in the area of management. Between the two classrooms, we are teaching 124 students. This is fantastic, but also somewhat overwhelming. Every member of our ning must have their profile checked out, to ensure that the basic rules of F.O.I.P. have been adhered to. Additionally, the members had to be put into groups and then these groups needed to, collaboratively, come up with a appropriate name for their group. These names must also be approved. Time consuming, but necessary. What I believe to be the most important aspect of this facet of the project is that we as a team have discovered that by open dialogue we can solve any and all problems that come our way. Lots and lots of open communication!
I must admit that I am looking forward to the next few weeks and the problems that may arise. I take great pride in the fact that I believe my partner and I are more than up for the challenges that might occur and believe we can handle anything thrown at us. Now, I just hope I haven't just jinxed us...