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ERIC Number: ED413143
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1997-Sep
Pages: 15
Abstractor: N/A
Reference Count: N/A
The Rural Learning Network: A Teaching and Learning Collaborative.
Pomeroy, J. Richard
This report examines the feasibility of a Rural Learning Network (RLN) using technology to connect rural California schools to educational resources at the University of California at Davis (UCD). Teachers from five rural schools agreed to participate in the pilot project for 2 years, during which time they would participate in on-line conversations, share student work, and conduct individual teacher research projects focusing on classroom use of technology. University participants agreed to connect preservice teachers to students through electronic mail; offer staff training; provide support for teachers in issues related to teaching, curriculum, and environmental studies; link preservice and inservice teachers for collaboration on curriculum development; and organize yearly meetings of participants. During the first year of the project, the five rural schools and UCD were connected electronically for electronic mail and schools were equipped with Internet access. In addition, UCD staff provided training at each site on the use of electronic mail and the Internet. During this time, interdisciplinary teams of preservice teachers communicated with teachers at the partner sites and developed lessons that integrated science and language arts. During the second year, analysis of the number of electronic communications indicated that all sites did not participate equally. In two cases, there was very little communication between the schools and UCD other than brief messages at the beginning of the year. Analysis of messages revealed that most sites participated in response to specific questions asked by the listserv manager, and that social messages represented about one third of all messages exchanged. Interviews revealed that student teachers lacked the time or access opportunities for active participation. By the end of the second year, no participants had shared student work on the RLN. However, teachers and technology specialists at three sites were conducting teacher research projects regarding the use of technology in the classroom. This report concludes by offering proposals for increasing the use of RLN and addresses strategies to improve the efficacy of RLN to teachers. (LP)
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A