Sunday, December 5, 2010

Support Networks

While developing this, I realised that I have a limited support network. I am very greatful to my two sons who support me in the care of their sister who is disabled. Without their support, I would not have been able to achieve the small amount of formal learning I have achieved recently and I would not be able to undertake the training work I do .

Online communities are a great option for me to form networks and connect with people and I realise I should utilise these options to a much greater extent. I have been introduced to Communities of Practice which will provide current information, innovative ideas, opportunities to share and opportunities to connect and for discussion. I hope to fill gaps in my network through this medium.

Below is a review of a valued element of my support network.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Support Networks: Communities of Practice

The Spruz, E-Leaders Gippsland Region, was developed by Junita as part of her role as E-leader in the Gippsland Region of Victoria. E-travellers can access information here and receive reports of activities related to the project. Over the course of the project, Junita has added many resources to assist e-travellers on their journey.

This site is an invaluable  resource as it is a 'one-stop-shop' for all things "E". At present there are three groups which can be built to reflect people's interests and needs. There is also a Forum to create converstion and to connect with others. There are presently seventeen members; some from outside the Gippsland region.

While this fledgling Community of Practice does not include features of some other Communities of Practice, it is an excellent repository of resources and it has the potential to encourage connection of like minded people as they build their e-learning experiences and as a beginning practioner, it is an excellent starting point.

The things I will look for in a Community of Practice will include a site that is open, welcoming and easy to access. It will encourages exploration and participation. There will be forums for discussion and connection. There will be opportunities to learn and grow knowledge and skills.

My intention is to engage more with this site and encourage others to visit and join. Having explored a number of Communities of Practice throughout this week, I am aware that each serves a different purpose. I have concluded that it necessary to belong to more than one to expand networks and expand knowledge and skills and aim to participate more in the ones of which I am a member. I will select two of these to meet other needs as I believe belonging to more will impact my ability to participate.

The slide show below gives a brief overview of the E-leaders Gippsland Region Spruz.

E Leaders Gippsland Region

e-leaders Gippsland Region