Flat Classroom® Certified Teacher Personal Journal
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Name: Abena Bailey (Baiden)
Current School/Institution: Nexus International School, Putrajaya
Country: Malaysia
Teaching / Administration responsibility: Teacher / ICT Trainer
Flat Classrooms NingID: Click here
Twitter: iTeachTweets


Brief Bio:
An English (Language Arts) teacher from Northern Ireland currently living and working in Malaysia. I'm looking forward to the global connections that come from this project, and excited to take my learners on a journey of discovery through Web 2.0 tools, expanding their PLNs and raising their awareness of how the world is indeed 'flat'.

Google Apps Edu Certified Trainer
MEd Applied Linguistics
PGCE English & Drama
BA (Hons) English & Philosophy
Cambridge CELTA

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FLAT CLASSROOM® FIFTEEN CHALLENGE

Over the length of this course you are asked to complete Fifteen Flat Classroom Challenges. These are based on the Flat Classroom 15 Challenges found in 'Flattening Classrooms, Engaging Minds'
Use the table here to share your completed challenges. Each Challenge gains 5 points. Bonus challenges are also available! Don't forget to BLOG on the Flat Classrooms Ning after each challenge and share your work using the correct TAGS! All tags found on Flat Classroom Challenges wiki.

Challenge

Comments

Links

Points

FC15 #1: Set up your RSS Reader
I've been using Google Reader for a while now but with this course, I've just recently started to visit daily again.
Google Reader

FC15 #2: Set up your Blog
I've had this set up for a while. All my learners' blogs feed into it, but also some that I follow from a PL point-of-view. The 'Blogs Worth Reading' gadget on my blog lists my Top 5.

Today I merged my reflective log with my teaching resources.
Old Reflections

Current Blog

FC15 #3: Connect and Reflect
Getting started with the Blackboard conference was much easier than I expected. However, it was very intimidating being in a room with so many people of a majority culture. The Brits are known for being somewhat reserved and although being from Ireland I consider myself a warmer shade of Brit, I was still overwhelmed by the positivity of everyone. It has been a great discovery to realise that not all cultures of teacher are as negatively critical as that of the UK (just compare TES and Edmodo to see my point!), but it is difficult for me to connect with a group that can at times seem so positive that it comes across as ironic.

It raised an interesting reflection from the Flat Classroom book where it discusses the need to be aware of cultural differences, and it's certainly something I'll have first-hand experience of when I discuss this with my learners.

Conferencing with the FCP group was much more relaxed as there did seem to be more of a mix and, to be fair, there was less spoken interaction as we were there to receive information for the mostpart.

How this progresses will be very interesting but this is teaching me so many new facets of global collaboration and I'm glad to be on board.


FC15 #4: Communicate with new tools
The 'new tool' for me now is this wiki. I'm so at home in the Google environment that stepping out to this wiki has me struggling to find features which may or may not exist here. But that's all good; I'm always warning others against immersing themselves so far into a Google/Apple/Windows environment that they fall behind the curve with other tools so this is forcing me to practise what I preach :)
Synchronous tools - I'm now using Google Docs and Twitter with my project partner for FCCT.
I am also using Edmodo, Gmail and Gmail Chat to collaborate with partner schools in the US.
Sharing Cultures site

BONUS! #4: Set up a Collaborative Calendar
All my classes have their own calendars. I have a personal one that I use to organise my time and find mutually agreeable spaces for collaboration / discussion with members of my PLN.
Using TimeBridge has been really helpful but I'm pretty sure I just missed an online session as it wasn't working this week so I'm really going to have to get myself more organised!
At the moment, I share my calendar with my collaborating partners in the US but we haven't put much in there. TIme to get busy!
My Calendar

FC15 #5: Go Mobile!
While I do have a SmartPhone I am probably one of the last ICT integrators to actually resist going mobile for one very simple reason: I am a workaholic. I have pretty much constant wifi access via my MacBook and for the brief period that I did connect with my mobile, I found myself working literally every working minute to the detriment of my sleep patterns, personal and family relationships and workflow. By the latter I mean that I was doing 'quantity over quality' because there is a limit to how effective anyone can be having been online for 10 hours straight. So for me, 'Vive la resistance!'
In a lesson yesterday we were exploring how to make the familiar unfamiliar for the sake of engaging creative writing. After looking at a poem, my learners went off around the school armed with their camera-phones to take pictures of items from unusual perspectives. Returning to the class 10 minutes later they sat down to write some interesting texts.


BONUS! #5: Student PLN Construction



FC15 #6: Create a Classroom Monitoring Portal
  1. Wiki edits
  2. Wiki discussions (forum)
  3. Blog posts from learners on our social network
  4. At least one live research feed on the project topic
  5. Other research of your choice
My Year 8s
My Year 11s

Sharing Cultures site

FC15 #7: Empower Digital Citizenship Action
An interesting challenge which has highlighted the need for me to address my own practice.
Click here

FC15 #8: Collaborate and Communicate
Collaboration on a Study Guide for a novel.
Click here.

BONUS! #8: Edit Wikipedia
I edited the Wikipedia page for the Flat Classroom entry by editing typographical issues, reformatting to be more reader-friendly and adding my school to the list of participants.
Click here

FC15 #9: Assess
I based this on the current project of my Year 11s (16-year-olds) approaching their GCSE exams.
Click here.

BONUS! #9: Join as a Peer Review Classroom



BONUS! #9: Join as an Expert Adviser or Judge



FC15 #10: Give Students a Choice
I used the Apprentice project as an area for reflection.
Click here

FC15 #11: Align your Project to Standards
A reflection on aligning the Apprentice project with UK AFs.
Click here

FC15 #12: Celebration and Summation



FC15 #13: Global Project Design
Read about my global project design around the use of Standard English on my blog.
Click here

BONUS! #13: Engage with Social Media
I found partners for this project on Edmodo and we created a group entitled 'Our Global Classroom' as a safe space for discussions.
I also created the Twitter hashtag #ohmyenglishproject to distribute information and examples from our implementation of the project.


FC15 #14: Pitching your Global Project Design



FC15 #15: Flat Classroom Project Re-design





Total Points:( /105)


Place your journal entry for each week under the headings 'What?', 'So What?', 'Now What?'
  • make entries here in your own personal journal - this may include links to blog posts and other online material you create and/or are part of
  • browse the entries of other participants
  • add comments/reactions to another participant's journal entries under the discussion tab
  • contribute to discussions on the Ning, in the FCCT 13-1 Group related to the topic from the week

Part 1: Getting Started with Flat Classroom Pedagogy


Module 1: Connection

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Module 2: Communication

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Module 3: Citizenship

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Module 4: Contribution and Collaboration

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Module 5: Choices and Creation

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Module 6: Celebration

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Part 2: ‘Rock the World’ Global Project Design and Management


Module 7: Global Project Design Essentials

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Module 8: Advanced Global Project Design and Management Essentials Part 1

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Module 9: Advanced Global Project Design and Management Essentials Part 2

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Module 10: Putting it all Together

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