Monday, July 14, 2008

Oz/Nz Educators' Network grows

The OZ/NZ Educators’ group (started by Sue Tapp) have been meeting on Sundays for about three months, using Flashmeeting. I haven’t been able to get to all the meetings - one Sunday night I was actually at a Ball (!) - but the meetings, audio and chat, is always archived at the Ning and wiki for Oz/Nz Educators. There has been quite a lot of global collaboration between Australian and New Zealand educators but also a bit with England and Wales. Flashmeeting only takes 25 people and several of the meetings had people who couldn’t get in as there were too many in there. So there was discussion: should we move to a different meeting platform? Should we move to a different night? (on Twitter it was revealed that Sundays were not always the best night because of family commitments for some would be participants). Eventually Sue decided to move the meetings to Tuesday nights and go for the Elluminate meeting software. Our first meeting in this format is tomorrow night at 7.30 pm.

“Our meeting night has changed due to a number of requests We are now going to meeton Tuesday nights at 7.30pm -9pm. Also due to an increasing number of people not being able to access the room as it is full, we are going to try Elluminate and have access to a free 50 seat room through Knowledge Bank online events. So on Tuesday 15th we will attempt to meet using elluminate and do a NECC roundup to discuss what was hot and not at NECC.I apologise to the NZ crew who will have a late night if they attend ,but the meetings will be recorded if you can't stay up that late. See you all there- new members most welcome. You can download elluminate here and do a practice session here too. “

But on the Sunday night Joe Dale from the UK who hadn’t realised the change was looking forward to the regular collaboration with those from downunder and so held an informal chat with a few who were around. I found out about it some time into the meeting. There was a new person at the meeting, Steve Collis, who soon had us all inspired with the programs, including Beyond Borders, he oversees at his school. One of the projects he mentioned had students mobile blogging using utterz, sparking a rash of interest in the site and puzzling some. All in all it was an exciting meeting, and an inspiring one.

And what about the different interests of the two sets of stakeholders? How did we resolve the issue? We will have the meetings on BOTH Sundays and Tuesdays. People can go to one or the other or both. As I have always said, there can never be too much social networking (sorry Vicki, educational networking


  1. I'm so impressed that you even have this issue of so many people wanting to be involved. I wish there was something like this here in the US.

  2. The meetings are great aren't they Jo. They are a vehicle for growth. Many people in this network feel isolated in their schools and it so reassuring to find like minds. Looking forward to your reflections on NECC.

  3. This is great to know about. I think we should start one of these in the States, Lisa. And see if we can include both K-12 educators as well as those in higher education.

  4. I'm glad they are continuing on both nights.You are right. Sometimes it's easier to attend on a certain night. Sundays end up being quite late for us. I really enjoy being able to attend even though I am more of a lurker than a contributor. Looking forward to the meeting tonight.