There are so many benefits to using the Group feature in the community, especially for professional development. Here you can set up a private or public professional online community to share ideas, have discussions, upload files such as unit plans, and post links. Plus, within the Groups, you can set up Projects with deadlines and goals for added collaboration.
We are interested in how you utilize the Teachers Engage Group feature to help you succeed in facilitating a great course or professional development workshop.
If you have not yet used the group feature the following are resources for you to explore when considering on creating a group:
We look forward to your contributions.
Note: The Incentivized discussion period has concluded. A drawaing was held and the winner was notified.
We have a NY group where we can share some of the upcoming trainings and some different ideas for future trainings or other activities and support. I haven't used it for any of my trainings yet but I am currently running an Elements Assessment course that is done partly face to face so I would like to introduce them to the many resources in our last session. Thanks for the reminders of the resources.
JoAnn - Thanks for mentioning the NY Group. It's a good place to share information and resources. I found it gives me a
segue with groups to get them into the Engage Community. I have participants sign into Engage, read and post in the big community, then navigate to the NY Group. I hope all our MTs promote this resource.
I look to the Group feature frequently. I have even begun to use if for groups which are not Intel Teach training groups. I love the ability to copy the Mock Training group, and my "Tip" is this: Since you are not likely to remember where to find the resources listed above, you can "Bookmark" them the first time you visit them. If you don't do that, just put in "Mock" in the search feature and you will find a link to it.
Once you copy the Mock Training group, you can customize it easily! I like to put an image which evokes the geographic area where we are.
The most recent group I made is for a group of teachers who will participate in a year-long grant-funded project here in my County. The leaders asked me for a place where their learners could submit work, participate in discussions, and keep course-related documents. Bingo! That's an Intel group. In addition, the leaders will be able to create polls, add their assignments and more!
Once they get used to using their group, I will suggest a few discussions which are pertinent to their study *outside* their group and voila! They will be using the Engage Community as a whole!
I heartily encourage you all to use the Group feature of Intel Teachers' Engage!
Dyane, I will be finishing up an Essentials PT training tomorrow and we are using the group feature for everything. When I told the teachers they would only need one username and password for the week, they went nuts! I made their week. I had used a separate wiki in the last TwT I did, but would never do that again. I can't say enough good things about the group feature. It's worth the price of admission.
One of the great things I am able to do is to add a widget that allows me to set links for everything that I need for training. One stop shopping!
Bonnie, go to the "overview" tab and click the customize link. Next, click on "other" and then "formatted text". Just drag the widget where you want it and start editing. When you add text you can insert a link. It's very easy and it save a lot of time during a training.
I have not yet used the community groups feature to supplement an Elements course.
But- I have an Assessment course coming up when school starts. Did you know I am now the Associate Superintendent of Schools for my County? Among all the other districts in the county (second largest in land area in the country) we have an Accomodation District under the supervision of our office. I guess that makes me assistant superintendent of the district... Anyway- the teachers at our jail, our juvenile detention center, and an alternative high school in town as well as one 2 hours away are all the schools in our district. The teachers at all of these schools will be participating in the assessment course. We are using it as part of our PD plan leading up to an Accreditation visit in the Spring. Since we are so spread out, I am planning to use the Community for us to communicate and collaborate.
In AZ, the elements courses are offered through the AZ educators portal. I have used that portal as a place for collaboration and discussion. I expect the Community will be similar.
What questions do you have, Dyane? Maybe we can anticipate some issues together.
Dyane, I have not used the community for the Elements courses, but I use it for the Essentials and TwT trainings. I don't see why it wouldn't be as successful. As Bonnie stated, we offer the Elements courses here in AZ and do them in Moodle. I see the community as being very user friendly for the participant teachers, but it does not have the same back end features, the grade book, etc, as Moodle does. What specific concerns do you have?
With all of my facilitated Elements courses, I have used the Engage Group feature. It is really great for discussions and building a community of learners. It is also helpful for those educators who are just beginning to experience an online learning environment. It is a good way for them to become comfortable posting in a safe nuturing environment.
Just recently, I used the "group" feature for the first time with a class. Before, I'd always used www.wiggio as the "home spot" for our work, virtual conversation, and notices, because I felt I wasn't comfortable enough administering a "group." However, I found the group VERY easy to manage with a class of 17, and I felt the class learned quickly how to "catch on" and maneuver through, adding comments, uploading and creating digital content/responses. I learned, throughout the work with the group, that my participants also can get "points" for their conversation if I indicate the post is a question - so great! I definitely will default now to creating a group via Intel Engage as opposed to using a wiki or wiggio. The features really are similar and it's just as
In my recent round of Welcome emails to new members of the Community (I do about 500 per week!) I began sending our new members to the documents which show and tell how to set up and use a group. If you don't know about this feature yet, or you don't know how to copy the "Mock Training Group" and customize it for your own group, you will want to go there as well! Whenever you are in the community, keep an eye out for the "documents" tab at the top of your area. It might have some wonderful tips and tricks for you!
More information on using the group feature is here, and if you have further questions, it's easy to send a private message to another group member to ask questions!
I use the engage group all the time and I absolutely love it. I am currently doing a statewide training on the NC essential standards and commom core and have set up a Social Studies group to engage in discussions, share documents and provide feedback to questions. The group will also be used as follow up during the year as the districts return to their schools to provide trainings for their teachers.
Can you please add me to this group? I am the new 9 - 12 Social Studies facilitator in Alamance County
All of Gail's groups are currently private and I suspect they are for specific groups of people with whom she is working. You can click on her name to send her a private message here in Engage, or visit her Groups page and request to join her groups...
A team of us ceated a group for the Transforming one to one curriculum and it worked out fabulously. Once the participants felt comfortable navigating after a few days, they were able to jump right into the whole group community discussions.
Coming up with the right types of questions to ask in order to stimulate conversation is sometimes challenging. What are some questions that you use to stimulate discussion in your groups and what types of questions have generated the best conversation?