How-To prepare for giving a quality course

Authors

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Wordle Logo quality courseThis logo was created with Wordle. You are authorized to copy it by providing credits to this blog!

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Tip: NO TIME? Read ONLY the bold! Check out also my Wordle-Logo where the main keywords are present.

This blog aims to help people who start giving courses and/or would like to give courses one day, but others would certainly also find some new and interesting information to help improving their difficult tasks!

Introduction: What’s our role as Teachers, Educators, Instructors?

. teacherThe roles of Teachers, Educators and Instructors are the following and especially in networked learning environments:

          1. First of ALL: being BEST informed about 21st Century Education, a MUST! I precise!!! Your Professional Development MUST be up-to-date!
          2. Motivating the learners to learn
          3. Amplifying the learned
          4. Learning to learn, meaning: teaching that way that learners are being able to learn without a teacher (in the future, after school)
          5. Educating the learners to get competencies
          6. Amplifying the creativity of the learners. The world needs creative thinking people!
          7. Preparing the learners to get used to the 21st Century tools and to use them well; such as: Social Media, Office programs, Blogging
          8. Give the learners and yourself a challenge, challenges are great to achieve very difficult goals…
          9. Bring in some psychological tricks from marketing to make your learners curious about a certain topic
          10. Learning about the psychology of the sale and marketing would be a big profit for teachers and  learners! Check also http://www.destinationcrm.com/articles/Editorial/Magazine-Features/The-Psychology-of-the-Sale-53701.aspx
          11. Sell your product, that’s your to learn Topic for the learners. Be a good salesman!
          12. Educating the learners to Internet-Safety and to the basics of IT-Security is becoming a Must in 21st Century as we use e-Learning and “Bring Your Own Device” (Hashtag for Twitter = #BYOD)!
          13. We should educate the learners to become good e-Citizen, Digital Citizen
          14. We as Teachers, Educators and Instructors need to have latest updated 21st Century knowledge in Education and with Education Tools! Our Professional Development (PD) is very important to achieve the daily tasks! Check Twitter to know more about (lots of discussions…) https://twitter.com/i/#!/search/Professional%20Development%20(PD)?q=Professional+Development+%28PD%29
          15. Trying to become a perfectionist to bring over best results, investing 300% of personal work to make sure to get out at least 80%…
          16. What Makes a Master Teacher
          17. What is a 21st century teacher?
          18. Be prepared for Connected Learning

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===> The aim of art is to represent not the outward appearance of things, but their inward significance. -Aristotle <===

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KEYWORDS FOR THIS FREE COURSE AND WHAT YOU WILL LEARN:

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comp6_e0===> 21st Century Skills <===, Proactive Thinking, 21st Century Tools, motivation, engaging your learners (students), Learning to learn, respect, e-Citizen, Digital-Citizen, competencies, Professional Development (PD), Life-Long-Learning Strategies, Curation, How-To create a Book on WordPress, Critical Thinking, Quality Publishing, How-To use the 21st Century Tools, The SUCCES of our learners (students) depends on our knowledge, WE as teachers, professors, educators, instructors can always improve, WE as professionals are not allowed to have a “lazy bone attitude”, WE as professionals need to protect the reputation of our profession by providing quality content, Accessibility, Blogging, Online-Safety, Cyber-Hygiene, hygiene, Awareness, motivation, engagement, heroes, Security-Scouts, stay out of the box, adapt to new technologies, be aware of the malware, nobody is perfect, knowing the dangers and risks, responsibility, responsibility of School, responsibility of Education, responsibility of IT-Admin, responsibilities of BYOD users, Apple insecurity, Insecurity of Apps, Principals responsibilities, Mobile Device Management (MDM), Mobile Application Management (MAM), risks of BYOD, BYOD-Policy, IT-Security Infrastructure, Teacher-Parents Meeting, Cyberwar, Cyberwarfare, Government, Internet-Safety, IT-Security knowledge basics, UK govt encourages insurers to reward good IT security…

  • The weakest link in the Security Chain is the human! If you don’t respect certain advice you will get tricked by the Cyber-Criminals!

===> NOBODY is perfect! A security by 100% doesn’t exist! <===

===> “Nothing in life is to be feared. It is only to be understood.” – Marie Curie – <===

===> The roots of education are bitter, but the fruit is sweet. -Aristotle <===

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Protecting the organization’s network and its data from attack and misuse requires more than just a BYOD mentality; establishing secure, mobile-enabled operations requires a mobility access control program that includes corporate-provisioned, approved employee- and partner-owned devices as well as unmanaged guest devices.

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Take your time, please! There are a lot of information for some to learn; take it easy ;)

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The Main Skills of a 21st Century Learner and Teacher

The quest to be a modern teacher or student is in full swing. First though, figure out if you have these important 21st century skills.

  • Develop proficiency and fluency with the tools of technology;
  • Build intentional cross-cultural connections and relationships with others so to pose and solve problems collaboratively and strengthen independent thought;
  • Design and share information for global communities to meet a variety of purposes;
  • Manageanalyze, and synthesize multiple streams of simultaneous information;
  • Createcritiqueanalyze, and evaluate multimedia texts;
  • Attend to the ethical responsibilities required by these complex environments.

First of ALL, please check these images as on my point of view they show BEST:

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21st Century Skills

Image credits: Edudemic

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education 3.0

Image Credit to: http://www.teachthought.com/learning/8-characteristics-of-education30/

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Is your Professional Development Up-To-Date?

I think that “Is your Professional Development Up-To-Date?” is the first question which you need to ask yourselves! You can ONLY give BEST and QUALITY courses when knowing about the latest knowledge in a 21st Century Education. But HOW TO know this?

That’s a question I am getting asked very often from Teachers and Teacher-Students around the world through my Social Media presence on Twitter and I must say what I see on a global base doesn’t make me feel really happy! Lots of teachers around the globe are tweeting, which I encourage to do as much as possible by joining ALSO a so called “PLN“, a “Personal Learning Network“, but ONLY a few shows a real understanding, competencies, about what they are doing; even the so called “Edu-Stars” in certain countries!

Here is my selection of  BEST articles and Curation on HOW TO find out:

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Future Work Skills

Future Work Skills Needed (A MUST Read!)

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===> You will find the full article (FREE Course) here Is My Professional Development Up-To-Date? <===

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How-To prepare for giving a good course

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How-To prepare for giving a good quality course? That’s a question I got asked often from teachers and students in real life as well on the Internet from my “Personal Learning Network” (Hashtag on Twitter = #PLN), so I decided to share my knowledge through this blog and also giving practical advice about my lived adventures of giving courses and my evolution for giving better quality courses… We all make mistakes (especially when newbies…) and we have to learn from them; learning by doing and also the will to make it more perfect by a “Life Long Learning-Strategy”!

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I suggest to you to read first:  [Start] Text from the website Assessment for Learning.

Introduction to Assessment for Learning

This professional learning module is designed for those who are unfamiliar with the background to Assessment for Learning. It provides information which answers the key questions about Assessment for learning, proposes some key ideas and asks teachers to reflect on their own classroom practice.

Click on the links below to explore further:

. [End Text from Assessment of Learning] . .

First of all, for whatever writing stuff and teaching activities, make a serious preparation by “brainstorming“. Let it go, let it flow and don’t take care about the order how you write down the stuff who is in your brain; it must first come out and you can later review it and trying to organize it… Below, e.g. you will see my thoughts and “brainstorming” for a new online course, it’s handwritten and not yet completely organized, but it contains the main idea and keywords and that’s the most important anyway…

===> Update (August 05, 2012): I got told about my handwriting that it is :((( I agree, most of the keywords were written while walking and on places where I didn’t have a solid underground to write properly ;) Check below and read more, so you will understand, but really read it all, my critics back, sorry ;) <====

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Preparing-a-course-handwritten-notes-28.0.2012.

So, once written down as handwritten, for me the best and quickest way, you should have a look on how you could create Topics out from your keywords and best is to create Topics with a question mark! Actually to create this blog ALL my ideas were first ONLY in my brain and I wanted to use the above handwritten “brainstorming” to explain, but then, in the middle of writing the blog I got new ideas, found new stuff through “curation” and “serendipity” gave me new “brain food” to continue with it… So I decided to show you also my handwritten “brainstorming” and “keywords” for this blog, see below”…

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brainstorming-handwritten-prepare-for-a-quality-course

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You may even see some keywords represented twice, don’t worry; better bringing in something twice than not at all! Keep your concentration on what your brain tells you to bring out… PS: I hope you can read my handwritten notes; I keep every time a paper sheet in the shirt pocket and so I write notes down where ever I get the ideas (in the bus, while walking in the nature…). No, no… The other place what you think, I don’t, at least one taboo place, LOL…

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1st Step: get organized

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MENDELEY

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.We were talking already about brainstorming by handwritten notices and curation, but I didn’t give you practical examples apart from the handwritten brainstorming, so let’s do this now… I will give you FREE resources which you can use for a best organization for your research, as you need to research first to find best adapted articles to give your courses:

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There are different ways to collect the necessary information such as collecting, curating information by your own but you can do this also on a collective way (might be good to do it together with your students/learners…):

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Read more:

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Why should I use questions?

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1ibdy1vf6wghd-n05dgl-aigainformation1By providing Topics as a question that will make people curious and it will allow you also to bring in your “critical thinking” which is very important for a quality course. Use also empathy and “emotional intelligence” to get your learners engaged in your course…

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What else should I consider?

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To make your course interesting to your learners  propose them also to make curation about the Topic they will have to learn, so they will get involved into the learning process by researching their own related resources

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 “A picture is worth a thousand words”, so use pictures and multimedia to enhance the learning. Create a Pictures and multimedia library to enhance your worksheets and blogs… Make this library also available to your students and ask them also to help for building up that library

Some learners would be curious and they might also want to read some books, so prepare also a list of books and eBooks which they could retrieve in the school library; here again: involve your learners also to help building up that list

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A list of books which I have read and which I recommend to any teaching person could get found on my blog http://gustmees.wordpress.com/2012/04/14/21st-century-howto-guide-for-teaching-people/ at the bottom of the blog. The presented books are in English, French and German (as I am multilingual…).

Let your learners blog about what they learned and let them Peer review their own blogs, read more here to understand the idea behind it Peer to Peer U – A New Model of Learning.

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Why connected learning?


Connected learning is a necessity in this digital age. More and more of our students learning, attention, and access to information is taking place outside of classrooms and through online networks and exchanges. Connected learning, however, can help them cultivate the skills necessary for fulfilling adult lives and careers and that formal instruction alone could not afford. Check complete article here Connected Learning.

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Free blogging resources:

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For young kids choose first a safe blogging service where the blogs will not be public and where ONLY you as teacher, parents and kids have access; this to educate them first about blogging, Internet-Safety, e-Reputation, e-Citizenship, Digital-Citizenship, the dangers of Internet! Once they have the necessary skills you can switch over to the normal blogging services…

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Create your courses on a “living way“, make them interesting and alive to your learners, show a bit humor as well, show your own motivation and your passion for your job…

Related links:

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While blogging and/or creating a website there are also some rules to respect such as the right color schemes, check out below:

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ColorMatch

Click image to access the FREE Tool…

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Summary: Matching your web site colors isn’t always as easy as it should be. Colors that look good to one person may look terrible to someone else. Color Match is a web site tool that helps you to easily find a perfect color scheme generated from a base color then displays the matching HTML color codes.

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You want certainly also to create some day online courses, aren’t you? Please check the links below who give you advice:

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Years ago I created a blog 21st Century How-To Guide For Teaching-People who might be also helpful to you, just check it, please…

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Be also informed about 21st Century applications, subscribe to my daily published “The Knol Infos Daily” and my curation:
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Accept critics from your learners, how? Create a multiple choice poll where your learners can vote about the quality of your course, accept their critics and discuss with them what about you could change, example below…

.The poll below is multiple choice, so go for it please to let me know your meaning about this blog. Thank you in advance…

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Don’t Forget The Copyright Laws…

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When working together with your students and when they are publishing content (even yourself…), please take care about the copyright, you are not allowed to copy&paste content from Internet and text from books from other persons without their knowledge and their permission…
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When writing a book, creating a presentation for your students and when teaching your students and asking them to make researches (on Internet and on books) you are not allowed to copy and paste from other web sites, nor copy from an existing book, be conscious and responsible about that, please… Respect other author’s property… Here below a non exhaustive list of laws in different countries…
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Please help making this list bigger, when knowing other resources let me know and I will include them. Thanks in advance…
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Remember the 4 C’s

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The Four C’s: Making 21st Century Education Happen features educational leaders from Envision Schools (California), Catalina Foothills School District (Arizona) and Virginia Beach City Public Schools (Virginia). Each school profile focuses on a unique aspect of how 21st century skills can help prepare students for college or a career. This film highlights both the student perspective, as well as how educators are using the 4 C’s to create a collaborative environment. A presentation of EdLeader21 [edleader21.com] and the Pearson Foundation [pearsonfoundation.org].

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Is your blog, web site created for best accessibility?

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What is Accessibility? 

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sharing icon[Start Text from Online College] The worlds of web design and online learning are interconnected in many ways. As an instructional designer, I work to ensure that courses are effective not only in terms of online navigation and working links, but also in the presentation of meaningful content and interaction. Not all websites are created equal – some have much more helpful layouts and information than others – and it’s a similar situation with online courses. Just as web designers consider the “user experience” when creating new web pages, you should considerlearner experience” when creating new materials for your online course. [End Text from Online College]

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I suggest to use this tool to check for best Accessibility: “Wave” WAVE is a free web accessibility evaluation tool provided by WebAIM. It is used to aid humans in the web accessibility evaluation process. Rather than providing a complex technical report, WAVE shows the original web page with embedded icons and indicators that reveal the accessibility of that page.

Check also my curation here:

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One can respect best accessibility knowledge and still have forgotten something (so did I…), here a screenshot from my test of this blog, check below to find out. So I really love that free service as it gives me best results… But it’s ONLY a tool, there is still more to consider as giving a transcript for published videos as well as a header for videos, which I still have to include also, later…

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Accessibility Test

Click image to enlarge…

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Check the links on your publication(s)!

programmerman2Once your blog and/or website published check ALL the inserted links to control if they are working correctly (broken link?) and ALSO if they are pointing to the RIGHT address! One wrong letter included in the URL could lead to direct YOUR visitors to a malicious website, take care!!! This is called “Typo Squatting” or “URL Hijacking“!

The bad guys created already domain names using these mistakes to infect your devices with malware!

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Learn more:

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Are you prepared in case of a break of Internet connection?

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attention triangle iconIt certainly happens once to each teacher, educator, course instructor that in the middle of the course the Internet connexion was broken, not a real fun when one based its course ONLY on Internet, isn’t it!? But when we are well prepared we can continue our course also without the Internet connexion if necessary! But, how?

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There are several freeware programs on the software market which allow us to copy complete websites with all the present links in HTML format and we need then only to burn it to a CD or DVD. One of those programs is HTTrack which I have been using since long…

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[Start Text from HTTrack]

HTTrack is a free (GPL, libre/free software) and easy-to-use offline browser utility.

It allows you to download a World Wide Web site from the Internet to a local directory, building recursively all directories, getting HTML, images, and other files from the server to your computer. HTTrack arranges the original site’s relative link-structure. Simply open a page of the “mirrored” website in your browser, and you can browse the site from link to link, as if you were viewing it online. HTTrack can also update an existing mirrored site, and resume interrupted downloads. HTTrack is fully configurable, and has an integrated help system.

WinHTTrack is the Windows 2000/XP/Vista/Seven release of HTTrack, and WebHTTrack the Linux/Unix/BSD release. See the download page. [End Text from HTTrack]

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Once the whole web site with all the links and its content are downloaded you only need to burn it to a CD or DVD or maybe to a Memory-Stick, your choice…

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And what about IT-Security + Internet-Safety in a world of BYOD?

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programmerman2I see strange words in that Topic there, what are You talking about there, could You explain more, please!? That is probably the questions you have, isn’t it? Most of teachers, educators and instructors are using Apple and Mac related devices and are not used to IT-Security, vulnerabilities and don’t even see the necessity of IT-Security in a world ofBring Your Own Device“, called also “BYOD” and/or “BYOT” (Bring Your Own Technology)! But in 21st Century YOU should, remember your responsibility against your learners and the society, you are the ones who should give BEST education to your learners to prepare them for the working world and there IT-Security plays a BIG role!

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Learn IT-Security

Click image above to access the FREE courses about basic IT-Security and “BYOD”…

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[Start Text from http://www.infoworld.com/t/hacking/microsoft-hackers-aiming-cross-platform-vulnerabilities-199126?utm_source=dlvr.it&utm_medium=twitterMore and more hackers are targeting the same application vulnerabilities on Macs and Windows PCs as a way to reap the financial benefits of writing cross-platform malware.

The trend involves exploiting vulnerabilities that go as far back as 2009 in Office documents. Other cross-platform, third-party technologies favored by hackers include Java, Adobe PDF and Adobe Flash, Microsoft security researcher Methusela Cebrian Ferrer said Tuesday in the company’s Malware Protection Center blog. [End Text from InfoWorld]

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As this course is already very big, so I won’t bring in more information in here, instead check out please the following links where you will find the necessary information with Tips and advice:

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By checking the above courses you will remark also that I used different “techniques” to present them, even that one is made with “cartoons”. Why? There are different types of learners and different age of learners, so one course could attract more attention to a certain targeted group as another one! Think about that also, when you don’t see that wanted success so show people these different styles of presentation and ask them which one they would prefer and if necessary adapt your courses to that style also. You will sometimes need to create courses in different presentation styles…

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Make a list of possible questions that learners could ask, be prepared!

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aigainformation1For new teachers this will be the hardest part, for “oldies” that would be easy anyway as they know already the questions which would get asked even before the course starts, experience… But anyway, I suggest to create a FAQ‘s list online, on the internal server and/or an a server where your blog is hosted. Why? You would have at any time and from anywhere where ever you are (and your learners) access to it to revise it, very important! I suggest also that you ask your students to help for creating such a FAQ’s list, engage them! They will learn to learn

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Creating a FAQ’s list, but how? I am not used to that, what is your advice? There are different ways to create a FAQ’s list:

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This list will be a great tool for yourself who saves you a lot of time when once created, show it to your learners and every time you would have access also to it: So once a question is asked, switch to that resource on Internet and/or on a local server…

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So, after evaluation of some Tweeps (Twitter user) of my “PLN“, here below my FAQ’s with questions and answers I got asked already…

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Q01: I looked over your blog, and it has a ton of info. A bit overwhelming for folks new to your site.

A01: Overwhelming, YES when one doesn’t know how to learn ;) I suggest to read it like a book! Bookmark it and read it by chapters…

  • Learning-to-Learn
  • I consider later creating a WordPress-Book and bring in the whole in different chapters… But first the whole knowledge must come out to not lose the main ideas and then later it should be split into different chapters where one can even go deeper…
  • Here the link on How-To create a WordPress-Book for people who are interested…
Q02: between the lines a bit wider? I use an iPad… A02: I use the free version of WordPress and I don’t have influence on how WordPress converts it to iPad visibility, sorry. On a Laptop it looks OK, as I every time take care to leave enough space between the lines and also between the paragraphs to make it an easy read…
Q03: Lot of stuff. I loved that role of educator. Handwritings little bit messy. You got point! A03: Concerning the handwriting, YES it looks mess as I wrote most down by walking without having a solid underground to write, but ideas must come out when one gets them ;)
Q04: Concerning IT-Security, I use a Mac and other Apple devices, I don’t need to take care about IT-Security!

A04: Hahaha, a BIG laugh for that ;) What’s about updating your knowledge base? Check here please to find out the necessity to take care about IT-Security:

Q05: I would like also to create HTML Tables like You but I am not an HTML programmer, any Online Tool to help? A05: Hi; You don’t need to have a lot of knowledge of HTML to create tables, check below for Online HTML Table Generators:

Q06:testA06:testQ07:testA07:testQ08:testA08:testQ09testA09:testQ10:testA10:test

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Engage your learners into the learning process, How-To?

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Propose them also a Twitter Chat concerning a certain Topic of your courses, they will get engaged and motivated also. And they will get used to Social Media… But make a professional preparation for your Twitter Chat, I have seen strange “pseudo Chats” from big companies (I don’t name them…) and such Chat’s missed definitely their goal and didn’t reach the audience wanted…

My proposition for organizing an professional Twitter Chat is to follow #lrnchat, where here the link of their Blog who explains in detail on How-To http://lrnchat.wordpress.com/. Enjoy to follow this Twitter Chat, you will learn a lot through that Chat and about how to run a Twitter Chat, BEST Practice ;)

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You may check also the Twitter Chat #edchat, what is it? Check http://edchat.pbworks.com/w/page/219908/FrontPage and watch also the video, please. And here an excellent explication from its co-founder (@tomwhitbyHow does #Edchat connect educators?

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You may also create videos with your learners, this will engage them even more, check for best practice here Engage ME!

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Related links:

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Why all these mentioned topics and why is this blog so big?

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        1. Personally I want that my learners will get the best education and that they also have a certain freedom of working themselves for their own knowledge acquisition.
        2. Getting learners engaged in a course makes learning more valuable for them, they will learn even more as you might realize…
        3. By providing a blog with a lot of information it’s like a “book“, bookmark it and find your resources which you need also later; ONLY one address.
        4. In 21st  Century we need to have a lot of digital knowledge and digital skills
        5. Creating a quality course needs a lot of things to think about
        6. Use your blog to create a real website if there are a lot of information to bring over, like I do with most of my blogs… Once the whole information brought down in the blog you can later create small blogs who include ONLY a part of the published knowledge and you can even create a book with WordPress where you bring in the different chapters. This is also possible with WordPress, check here: Write a Book
        7. Thus meaning, create first your main blog (as I did here…) and later on you create the chapters as a new blog (a short one…) and create then a “WordPress Book” where you detail the single chapters mentioned in your main blog…
        8. You may have a look here to see how YOU can use a WordPress-Book as I did it with my FREE courses about IT-Security in French already http://gustmeesfr.wordpress.com/

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Final word: did YOU find out where YOU have to improve!?

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Chat iconBTW: I learned a lot while creating this blog (mostly a website now…) and I know that myself I have to improve, and YOU!? Life Long Learning that’s what ALL of us who are involved in Education need to do, isn’t it!? I created this blog to give some guidelines to young teachers and educators which whom I am in contact in real world as well as on Internet and who asked me what is best preparation for a giving quality course… As I gave courses for eight (8) years to youth, primary schools, teachers from primary schools and mostly to adult and seniors, so this above is my experience and also my learned while preparing this blog.

Advice: What you should know absolutely is when giving courses to adults and seniors is that they are not anymore used to learn, the brain is not anymore that much ready to accept new “input” to learn, they don’t have anymore practice with learning! They are out of the learning process and their brain is more directed to “profit”, as they are in the working world ;) So use, the “profitpsychological to get them involved with pleasure again to learn. My own experience has shown me that you will need about +/- 4-6 hours before you get them used again to learn really, before the brain switches to “back to school“!

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I will accept also any constructive critics as also some more resources from you dear reader, nobody is perfect, so you might have more knowledge as I have… I will update this blog when getting new knowledge and also when getting new valuable resources from my readers and they will get mentioned as well in this blog then (if wished so)…

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And don’t forget it, been involved in Education as a teacher, educator, instructor is not only a job! It’s a passion, love it and share your motivation with your learners…

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Image and icon sources (all FREE):

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19 Comments

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  2. 83775

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