Elearning, efacilitation, ecommunities, epedagogies: a professional standpoint based on evidence

Keith Turvey

Abstract


It could be argued that despite the growth of the Internet in schools and the recent addition of fast broadband connections to the repertoire of many primary schools resources, the majority of schools are merely exploiting the pedagogical potential of the Internet at a relatively superficial level. It was against this background, and feeling the need to incorporate the Internet into my own teaching in a more meaningful way that I used Think.com to develop an online community within my own school.

This paper reports on the process and findings from a teacher research project focusing on the use of an online community with three classes of thirty Year 5/6 children. In the paper I share and explore some of my findings and observations regarding the development of the online community. The paper considers some of the affordances of such an approach as evident from the project. For example, how does the concept of anytime-anywhere learning affect the teacher child relationship? Also, could online learning facilitate learning that is more suitable for children who find face-to-face environments intimidating? And, what are the pedagogical tensions at the centre of such an approach?

In its final conclusions the paper offers a glimpse of what new interactive communication technologies might yield within the primary education context, and leads to the conclusion that there remains a need for further research if the potential for new pedagogical approaches are to be realised.

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Editor-in-Chief: Prof Norbert Pachler
UCL Institute of Education, University College London
ISSN 1746-9082