Tapped In Newsletter: April 2008

...On the Tapis
April 2008
Issue 125

In This Issue

[1] April is National Volunteer Recognition Month
[2] Tapped In Technology Tip
[3] Is Tapped In a Learning Community?
[4] News Nuggets
[5] About ...On the Tapis

Quote of the Month - "People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed, revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone." - Audrey Hepburn, Academy Award-winning actress, humanitarian

[1]April is National Volunteer Recognition Month

April is National Volunteer Recognition Month. Although we appreciate our Tapped In volunteers every day, April is a great time to drop in and say thanks to the helpdesk volunteers and the people who present and facilitate the many calendar events. With an average of 50 events/month that comes to an impressive 600+ events per year! Each and every event is led by a Tapped In Presenter (volunteer) and supported by Helpdesk volunteers.

If you would like to become a member of the Tapped In Team to either lead monthly discussions or become a Helpdesk volunteer, log in and visit TI Presenters Guide, the support group for people who present discussions in Tapped In, or HelpDesk Central, the group room for helpdesk volunteers. Join the group that works for you and go to that group room to read the posted support information. Post an introduction to the group discussion board and become one of the very special volunteers that we'll be thanking, not only next April, but all year long!

[2] Tapped In Technology Tip

Tapped In Code of Professional Conduct
If you are bringing a new group of educators to Tapped In, please include the Code of Professional Conduct in your orientation. Tapped In houses a community of education practitioners, administrators, support providers, and researchers committed to professional values and standards of conduct. Members and guests must adhere to professional standards of conduct, as you would in any professional workplace or conference center.

[3]Is Tapped In a Learning Community?

Jason Ohler included the following information in his April 11 subTechst... life in the tEcosystem newsletter:

"Early online community studies - From 1988 to 1994 I conducted an assessment of an online conferencing community as an anthropologist might. Many interesting findings emerged in this study, including: The main reason people entered the conferencing system and stayed was to meet new people, make new friends and sustain the new relationships they created; Successful online conferencing was largely a matter of metaphor. Pick the metaphor that works for your conference and refer to it within the course of conversation." In the 14 years since Jason's study ended, do you feel that the basic "reason people entered the conferencing system and stayed" changed?

As Jason's study was ending, Tapped In's journey was just beginning. The Tapped In team that designed Tapped In, which went online in 1997, has developed a tremendous amount of research to support learning communities. You can view some of these publications on the Tapped In web site. The following information is from the Tapped In About page:

Transforming teacher professional development online
Research has shown that student achievement is directly linked to teacher quality. State and national teaching standards provide a framework for teachers' professional growth that requires teachers to engage in ongoing professional development throughout their careers. The increasing demand for continuous professional development means that providers must expand face-to-face programs to include online activities and content that engage teachers anytime, anywhere. The growing recognition that no single organization can satisfy teachers' ongoing professional development needs requires that educators and providers form communities to share strategies, resources, and support. Tapped In was developed to support this vision.

Learning Communities (would 'learning' be the metaphor referred to by Jason?) are designed to increase and improve the time teachers spend working with one another, extend classroom practice into the community, and engage teachers, students and administrators simultaneously in learning.

Tapped In, designed to facilitate learning communities, helps educators cope with the rapidly expanding Web 2.0 and Web 3.0 resources, demanding curriculum changes, meeting standards, etc. If only someone would design a day with more hours to learn all that new stuff! Since we're stuck with a 24 hour day and most of us still need to eat, sleep, and spend time with family, the solution for now is to learn to use our time more efficiently. If you're new to Tapped In, log in and take one of the tours. If you're an experienced member, participate in a discussion that you would not normally be interested in and see if you can get a new perspective on a topic. The Tapped In team looks forward to supporting you on your journey to become the best you can be!

[4] News Nuggets

Rushton Hurley presented his first ed-tech conference keynote on March 17 at Suffolk NY ASSET. Rushton reports that the keynote went very well. A podcast of the presentation is available here.
After the Webheads in Action (WiA) Convergence, TI member Moira Hunter posted feedback along with TI member Graham Stanley. The conversation following TI member John Hibb's post convinced Moira to write an article on disaster recovery. Working in the synchronous environment daily with different platforms, Moira wrote an article which was published by Learning Circuits.
Do you have a News Nugget about yourself or another member of the Tapped In Community? Send your News Nugget to BJ Berquist at bjb@tappedin.org.

[5] About ...On the Tapis

Past issues of ...On the Tapis newsletters are available online.

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