1 Put the pedagogy (not the technology) first
Now I agree wholeheartedly with Cath on this but from there our paths may differ. Any comments?
2 Do not under estimate the time needed planning and preparation phase. Nurture the seedling VLE.
We have spent 4 month preparing the VLE, MIS integration, student testing, colleague collaborations, school visits and more.
3 Involve students in every step.
We have involved student from our VLEs birthdate, every week they bring something new to the discussion. We have provided training, they are now the trainers. We have 20 highly passionate, creative trainers on staff and they work for the VLE because they own part of it.
4 Simplify the VLE, simple VLE, simple.
We have back tracked on our VLE, take more out than we put in. Keep it simple – again our thanks to the students.
5 Have the end in mind.
We know exactly where we hope the VLE to be following the first CPD session, the wholeschool CPD session, in 3 months, 6 months, after the first academic year and 3 years. We know which resources and activities we are going to support and those we hope staff will find on their own and we know we don’t know everything.
We have also added one or two additional opportunities for staff to explore, these are unmanaged opportunities. We want to learn too.
6 The VLE is one cog in the learning machine, how and where does it fit with the others.
We are working towards a blended learning model, we see the VLE contributing, not replacing, the learning process and school communication.
7 Don’t send staff to the VLE, meet them there.
We have set up important questionnaires and resources on the VLE, for example we have moved the helpdesk to the VLE. We want the VLE to be a valued tool. We have also created learning areas that are supported by training staff and Digital Leaders. We believe that a welcoming forum is an essential ingredient.
That leaves three more…