Tapped In Member Perspectives: Meet Keiko Schneider
Keiko Schneider is an ex- and future- Japanese teacher currently working
on a Teaching Online certificate from UCLA Extention. She hosts an online
forum and manages a listserv called senseiOnline. She is also the Online
Conference Chair at WAOE (World Assocation for Online Education).
My name is Keiko Schneider. Right now I run a small business called Saboten Web
Design and am in charge of several educational web sites and some businesses.
I also consult Japanese/Foreign language professionals with integration of technology.
I taught Japanese at the University of New Mexico until May 1999, when the funding
for the position ended. I recently completed my Teaching Online Certificate from
UCLA Extension and hope to get back to teaching online. I also serve as an officer
at World Association for Online Education (WAOE) and will be in charge of delivering
its first online conference in 2001. I am a manager of senseiOnline listserv and
I organize a monthly online forum called benkyoukai.
Although TAPPED IN has been around since 1997, I am a relatively new member of this
community. I have been one since early September of 2000. Although it is a rather
short time, I am already fascinated by the potential of TAPPED IN. I am grateful
for the supporters of TAPPED IN: NSF, SRI International, Sun Microsystems, various
partner organizations, staff and community leaders. The community effort of
TAPPED IN makes it much more than just an Internet site to chat and hang out.
It is an online educational community where educators and students come to meet,
learn, and work together.
Sessions and networking
I have participated in After School Online discussions and discovered they have an
educational focus and are well-organized. I "met" new colleagues and
also engaged in real-time interaction with colleagues that I have only known online.
This is a great place to network and participate in collaborative projects. I am
a regular (or trying my best to be) at the Foreign Language Forum lead by Chuck
Merrit of Palo Alto High School, the Tech in the Classroom discussion lead by
Donna Hendry, and the Euro Language Teachers session led by Philip Benz. The Foreign
Language and Euro Language sessions are closest to my heart as a foreign language
instructor and it is nice to be able to discuss issues that language teachers share.
The Tech in the Classroom sessions are not necessarily language instruction-oriented,
but it has been useful to see K-12 materials and the focus has been unique.
How easy it is to get to know colleagues from other disciplines is just one of the
things I appreciate about TAPPED IN. Even when I worked in a university setting
as a lecturer, it was difficult to connect with faculty in other departments.
I rarely met people who were more than a minute's walk away on the same campus
in different buildings. In the informal educational environment of TAPPED IN,
I have ventured out to participate in the Social Studies Forum, the Tech Tools
in Issue-Oriented Science Classrooms series by SEPUP (Science Education for
Public Understanding Program), as well as WebQuests with Bernie Dodge, and
various WebCT sponsored sessions focusing on distance-learning. Learning from
these colleagues, that I otherwise wouldn't have met, is eye-opening. This
is a new learning experience where you don't know what you can expect to gain.
For example, I found learning from science and technology specialists to be an
important aspect for the Humanities disciplines such as foreign language instruction.
I think TAPPED IN is a wonderful place for professional development. I would like
to hold class meetings to influence students' learning. I would like to continue
participating in the After School Online discussions, and to continue networking
with colleagues. I am hoping that I can host a monthly study forum with seseiOnline
listserv. Also I hope WAOE and TAPPED IN can establish a working relationship.
One possibility is to have an online meeting for officers since we are spread
geographically all over the world. Once I get back to teaching online, I would
like to use TAPPED IN to meet with my students, and I would like to keep using
it for meeting with my colleagues and for collaborative work.
Important to me personally is my office. I have been using my office as an online
meeting place. Since I travel a fair amount of time giving workshops and presenting
at conferences, I frequently need to communicate with colleagues about projects and
presentations. Meeting at TAPPED IN not only saves on our phone bills, but also
helps us run an efficient meeting with the tools they provide. The Whiteboard and
the Notes that we can look at together make us focus on the agenda rather than
chatting about things randomly. I especially appreciate the transcript that is
promptly sent to me after I log off. While having a meeting it is hard to take
notes, but the transcript helps me to easily document my materials for later reference.
I invited members of WAOE and senseiOnline to experience the TAPPED IN environment,
and I am glad that my colleagues that I work with closely are signing up with
TAPPED IN. For professionals in the Humanities disciplines, the virtual world
of TAPPED IN is rather unfamiliar, even for some Internet savvy people. I have
added graphics to my office to make things easier to find. Because of the graphical
interface of TAPPED IN, it is easy for beginners to learn their way around the
environment. As a web designer, I must say this web design is excellent.
TAPPED IN's design is functional, easy to navigate, and the graphics are sleek.
Last but not the least... the HelpDesk staff and volunteers that are logged into
TAPPED IN Monday through Fridays are extremely valuable.
Lastly, I would like to elaborate on future developments I hope to see at TAPPED IN.
Many Internet services still only accept standard ASCII letters in their text. This
is a barrier to people who need to communicate in languages other than English.
If TAPPED IN hopes to expand its vision globally, technical hurdle needs to be
overcome. I understand this is not an easy job to incorporate in the current system
of TAPPED IN. However I hope that TAPPED IN, which has done an excellent job so far,
can eventually provide its services to multi-lingual communities.