I am employed as a
teacher in an independent studies program that is part of a public school
district. I am responsible for teaching students in grades 9 - 12 and
imparting all the district's curriculum: English,
Math, Science, History, Electives, etc. I was hired, in part, because of my
background as a certified computer trainer and because I hold a CA teaching
credential. Presently, I am creating a web site for my students to refer to
as an additional resource for all of their subjects. This is a substantial
(uncompensated) effort . For my project, I am
focusing on creating a hybrid distance learning course in English for my
independent study students. The goal of this course will be to meet and
exceed the syllabus requirements of the school district.
Issue or Problem
There are a number of
issues in the program in which teach:
- First I teach students in
grades 9 - 12. Students spend only one hour each week meeting with me.
Much of that time is spend on administrative concerns: collecting and
assigning work and doing record keeping. In what time remains, I try
to have positive personal interaction with each student and focus on
one academic area: in most cases, writing. It is obvious, that the
lack of time coupled with a variety of student grades levels, impacts
on my ability to provide the lessons and resources I would like to.
- The students work
independently and are not in a classroom setting. As a result,
they have no opportunity to experience the benefits of participating
- The California budget
crisis is preventing schools from providing students with much needed
literature and grammar text books.
- Finally, my school
district does not have funds to compensate me for developing a
distance learning program or pay for an expensive CMS.
The need is to create a
hybrid distance learning course to supplement the on-ground English course.
- Adapt the current
curriculum into an online course.
- Create common online lesson
plans that can be used by students of all grade levels, for example,
web quests. Develop and place lessons and resources for grammar and
- Create discussion board
access for students to interact with each other and with their
- Provide an inexpensive CMS.
This may have to be a web site I have created and adapted with various
add-ons such as discussion boards or a Microsoft SharePoint
Team Services web site.
- Finally there will be a
need to screen and select students capable of participating in this
program. This has to be done without triggering complaints from those
that are not able to participate.