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Learning Project with FM wins MICROSOFT 1st prize!

Alexandra Okada, Monday 29 September 2008 | Annotate
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OpenLearn tools created by KMi are helping educators and researchers develop innovative practice and learning methodologies across the world! Paulo Moreira (Minho), Daniela Melare (UNED) and Ale Okada (KMi) participated as keynotes in the Web Curriculum Conference in Brazil describing the best learning projects from CoLearn Community with KMi Tools: Compendium and FlashMeeting Project. The example presented by Moreira was the project "Flying across BPF" from schools in Brazil, Portugal and France. This learning project with FM won the competition "Innovative Educators", sponsored by Microsoft. It was first among 600 entries! As the Portuguese collaborator in the OpenLearn, Moreira has been investigating the uses of FM webconferencing in schools from different countries. The project focused on the amazing "14-Bis" airplane built by Brazilian pioneer Alberto Santos-Dumont and flown in France in 1906 - setting the first aviation record in Europe. Students in the project used blogs and FM to share information between countries about the 14-bis airplane and Santos-Dumont's life. Through FM, students presented their research and discussed their investigation with the writer Claudio Fragata, author of a book about Santos-Dumont's life, and also with members of the Ministry of Culture and Education in Portugal. Moreira emphasized that OpenLearn Tools have helped children improve their communication skills. Students were also able to expand their knowledge networks with peers and specialists from different countries, including scholars and members of Government. He also mentioned that Colearn Community has been an important virtual environment for exchanging best practices and the different uses of technologies. CoLearn is an Open Research Community interested in OpenLearn Tools. It was created by Okada in October 2006, when OpenLearn Project was launched. During the last year this community has expanded to hundreds of members in Portuguese speaking countries. Participants share Compendium Maps, FM webconferences and research papers about OpenLearn Tools in Portuguese, English and Spanish. Melare, who presented her research about learning styles, has been investigating online learning through FM and Compendium. She also pointed out that CoLearn Community had been a significant open "laboratory space" for analyzing technology enhancing learning, sharing new researches and getting thoughtful comments.

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Alexandra Okada

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