Ah the internet (or World Wide Web as the local newsman calls it...). I'm never surprised at the amazing networking opportunities it provides. I get tweets and emails weekly from teachers, students, and parents. Usually they are kind comments and questions. Occasionally, I'm asked to read and review a book (who doesn't love a free book?) - a few weeks ago I got a most unusual email.
Rachael Stefanussen, an Industrial Design student, emailed and asked if I would take a few minutes to look over her senior capstone project. Being the busy person I am (yes, the kids leave at three, but we all know how that goes), I agreed, but it took me a few weeks to give it the attention it deserved. When I finally sat down to view her project, I was blown away.
Rachael's video was entertaining, professional, and, most importantly, thought provoking. She has envisioned a Portal that would connect teachers across communities to collaborate on classroom management, lesson planning, and all aspects of teacher mentoring. After viewing the video twice, I emailed Rachael with my thoughts and ideas. What about crossing all boundaries and making this international? What about integrating Facebook and twitter and using the already built networks many teachers have created?
Part of what excited me about Rachael's video is the simple idea that someone is thinking outside the box and trying to push the teaching experience even further into the future. I love progressive pondering and Rachael has really impressed me with her ideas.
Rachael was very gracious and we had a nice email dialogue back and forth. I asked her if she minded me sharing her wonderful proposal with others... she agreed on one condition - she'd love feedback from others too. So here it is. Please take a few minutes to watch and leave a comment for Rachael.