Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Adapted Learning

I was able to squeeze some time in today to play around on Mayer Johnson's new Adapted Learning site. Very cool although it took me a little bit to figure out how all the features work (I know, I know, that's what the "support" button is for). I was able to make a couple of friends and join the Yahoo group. I also saw a number of boards I'm interested in so I marked them in My Files although I haven't had time to download them yet. I did find the file browsing function a little frustrating but I'm sure they'll work that kink out soon. Kudos to all the beta testers. My goodness what a huge amount of work they went to to have so many boards up and ready for sharing. Every one of them had to be "zipped" and uploaded. I'm contemplating sharing a few of mine but I'm going to have to find the time to "proof" them, remove personal info, and zip them. Maybe over Thanksgiving break? Or Christmas? Or....??

I'm looking forward to backing up all my BM files (and those of my students) to the site. I have one student using BM at home so I think I'll try forming a "group" for him too so Mom and I and the SLP can communicate more easily and share boards back and forth and work on them without having to fight over the jump drive (or forgetting to upload or download to and from the student's computer).

Look for me on the forums. I'm "aodom." Feel free to ask me to be your friend. We can all use a buddy here and there. :-)

2 comments:

  1. As a beta tester (who uploaded about 70 boards) I can tell you that boards do NOT have to be zipped. You can just upload them as Boardmaker files. However if you have multiple boards on the same topic or if you have a set of interactive boards that link to each other you will need to either "zip" them (I recommend the free software 7 zip) or export them as a package of boards within Boardmaker (there are directions if you click on "share what you have".

    The file browsing system is annoying, Mayer-Johnson knows and they are working on it. Some of the things I discussed with them were making an option to view more boards at once, making it less steps to save and/or download boards, making the file browser return to its original place if you leave that screen to save a board and then return to the screen and making the bottom of the file browser look a bit like the bottom of a search engine (with arrows and numbers to navigate). All of this will likely take time, but I know they are taking such discussions seriously because other suggestions I made happened soon after I made them.

    Give it time and I think you will find it to be an amazing site. I can't wait to be done with the nagging of the Yahoo Boardmaker Group Facilitators. I support them when ever they nag because they do it for free and need others to participate, but it is soooo annoying to have the list taken over by a "nag" to participate followed by days and days of people reacting to the "nag".

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  2. The points you listed above are all the things I struggled with on adapted learning. I can't wait to see where this site goes. Looks really good so far.
    As far as the nagging on the Boardmaker group, I guess I don't mind that so much. That very nagging is what got me to stop being a lurker and to start contributing. BUT I will also say that the constant barrage of "I don't have time" and "why are you picking on me?" and just general whining that follows a "nag" post gets more than a bit annoying. I mean, come on. If you can find time to complain surely you can find time to add to a discussion, start a discussion, or provide feedback on an activity. I can kind of understand where the moderators are coming from, however, because there are sooooo many members and yet it seems to be the same handful of people contributing. And then there are those who can't seem to get it through their heads that there is more to contributing than posting activities. I haven't posted a single activity (at least not yet) but still feel like I'm an active contributor. This is a real issue on TEAL, which is just not very active at the moment. The moderators just started a "cookie exchange" type of program where you can get a whole theme package if you contribute something to it. I think this is a great idea even though I probably won't have time to contribute anything to the current theme so won't personally benefit.
    In any case, it will be exciting to see where adapted learning goes over the next few months. Hopefully it will continue to be active after the "honeymoon period" wears off. There is such great potential for it.

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