Wednesday, June 10, 2009

some end of the year musings

Had a great meeting with our BOCES liason and the kids today...Lynn Yoder (SL Name) came to our RL classroom for a chat. We debriefed a little (what worked, what didn't) and Lynn told us about some exciting new stuff for next year. To wit:

Next year there's a possibility another school will be holding a Virtual Worlds course at the same time we do. This will give us an opportunity to mix the classes and get the kids working on collaborative projects between the districts. Geographically our schools are about 70 miles away from each other. Our sports teams compete against one another, so this will be a fun opportunity to meet them in another setting.

In addition, at least one other school has expressed an interest in bringing kids on "field trips" into SL. Lynn told the class that those who remain will be asked to provide specific builds depending on what these teachers request. I saw grins from the four returning students, that told me they're excited about that possiblity.

Speaking of returning students, the four mentioned above are returning to the class itself, but three others have asked if they could remain as mentors, even though they're not taking the class. I'm encouraging them to do so, since this IS what they trained for this year. Two others are graduating, four want nothing to do with this after the end of the week (I think they wanted more shoot 'em ups). The others are still making decisions about what they want to do next year. Since I have only 14 in the class, I'm thinking a 50% retention rate (as in coming back to work or help next year) is pretty good!

Some other suggestions/requests for next year:
Allowing students to set up businesses that could actually be run for a profit
Taking out 2 of the carousels (kids admitted it was fun riding one the first time, but they didn't go back. And three carousels is overkill)
Get permissions to modify buildings put in by Ohio State or rebuild them and then remove them as there are bugs and assorted problems with some of them that we can't fix without permissions.
Fill up the libraries with texts from Project Gutenburg.

Winding down!

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