When class begins, July 6, we will be using a program called Pepper To access it, you first enter your OISE/UT portal account and Quercus. I recommend the latest version of Firefox. Internet Explorer does not function well. You can have more than one browser on your computer. I also like using SeaMonkey as it has a built-in web editor. Start up your web browser and type in https://q.utoronto.ca the link to Pepper is on your Quercus course navigational menu on the left. If you have bookmarked (or put in favourites) the course information site, the link you need for the course is there. (http://astralsite.com/5011) When you arrive at Quercus, you have entered the main entrance for this course in Pepper.
We do NOT have to all be in Pepper at the same time - the work there is summitted asynchronously. We will be using chat programs for synchronous planning team and partner work. If you have any trouble getting into Pepper, please send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org in case your name has not been entered correctly. I will check it out and reply as soon as possible. When you get into Pepper, you will find all discussion forums (topics or headings) are already set up.
WELCOME- This forum is to introduce each participant. I ask each of you to post a note there telling about yourself. It is helpful to know what brings you to this course, for example, if you are teaching, what subjects and what age groups. What is your focus at OISE? Is this your first online course? What experience do you bring related to holistic concepts and/or using computer technology? You will be sending me a survey so that I can help you to better reach your objectives. This survey is a warm-up to the Welcome - Introduction Forum. The information you share will be helpful in determining learning partnerships and teams. Teams and partnerships will be announced at the beginning of Week Two. In Profile you are asked to upload a small digital picture of yourself or at least, an image that you wish to be identified with. This is your avatar. Please make sure I have the correct information on the Class Chart. I need to know where you are located this summer to determine your time zone for chats.
If you have questions, please ask! Anyone in class can answer. More advanced users will please act as mentors to those new to technology. You'll note that each member of the class has the level of expertise and what platform (MAC or PC) by their name in the class chart.
There are Forums for discussions of the readings and for commenting on the weekly discussion topics. You are not required to comment on EVERY single posting! One thoughtful response to each topic is expected though you may get more involved in topics that you are particularly interested in. It is important to keep up with postings as the volume can be quite overwhelming if you are not vigilant. Note where you have unread messages. As you read messages, note the name of author and subject line for postings you plan to respond to later.
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This course also uses the Quercus Learning Management system. Although the main focus is on Forums in Pepper, a few of the items like Announcments aare in the Quercus navigation menu (left side of screen) For Quercus you will need to have a utor account- this is part of your registration process. If you have an active utor account you can easily log in to your course with your user name and password. Please go to this page - http://www.oise.utoronto.ca/ec/getting_access.php to read about Getting Connected. Here you will find information about the T card and on your utor ID and Quercus.
Step-by-step instructions to create
a UTORid to access Blackboard are available
PDF Files - From time to time during the course, you will go to specific sites on the Web or do exploring for sites. I may also post some files for you to look at and read. Some files may be in a format called PDF. If you are an Ontario teacher and have visited the Ministry of Education site for curriculum or other documents, you are likely familiar with this format. These files cannot be read by regular word processors and you need a PDF file reader. This program is called an Adobe Reader and is available free of charge in many places (including the Ministry site). If you do not have the Adobe reader and wish to get it, you can also go to Adobe Reader on the web and download it free of charge.
Chat - In this course, it is necessary to be able to "chat" in real time, synchronously. This can be a challenge if you and your learning partner or members of your team live in another time zone. With careful planning, you can schedule your chats so all can participate as needed. It is important to be able to save your chat as a doc. and upload that file to Pepper so it can be posted to the appropriate forum. Some students have found What's App is a good tool for chatting. You may prefer Zoom meetings. Whatever you use, I will be asking for reports on chats. Perhaps your team will want to use Google Docs and summarize the meetings.
Web 2.0 Resources
We may be exploring Web 2.0 tools and social networking programs such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.
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Other Meeting Places TBA
- a place to visit with each other, talk about things that are not course
related. It's a place where we can be informal and kick back and
talk about anything we would like (usual rules of propriety of course).
Tech and Tips Page - where questions and answers related to computer technology will go, monitored by mentors with more advanced skills.
This is also where ideas and tips for doing things can be posted.
ResourcesPage - for sharing URLs for useful sites or for downloading software or links to helpful articles. You are required to post at least one resource to this subconference giving an annotation as to why this resource is useful.
Partners collaboration with the Reading 5 project (when completed) will be posted in Pepper in Reading 5 Forum.