Noel Erskine, Technology Coordinator Norris Schools

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Open Educational Resources (OER) may assist the 1to1 initiatives in schools.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

As we look to eBooks and digital curriculum we often discuss 1to1 device initiatives. Having a similar and accessible device in every student's hands only makes sense in incorporating eBooks and digital curriculum across a district. As with any technology, costs start entering into the discussion as well.  After reading a recent article in Digital Directions, called "Open Educational Resources Surge", my response was "of course the are!"  With state standards prevalent across the nation and increased Internet availability, most districts see the eBooks and student digital devices coming.

I figured I would put together a quick list of some OER resources from this article as well as a few other sources that can assist districts with developing their own ebooks and digital curriculum.

GooruLearning  is a OER collection that also will tie into your Google Apps domain, for those schools that are Google Apps customers.  (Not sure why all schools are not!)  This is their self description: "Use Gooru to search, study and create. You can search for and study from individual resources, collections (teacher-vetted playlists of multimedia resources), and formative quizzes created by educators in the Gooru community. You can also share your knowledge on a topic you are passionate about by creating a collection. We celebrate and encourage authorship and sharing of Open Education Resources (OER), and are stringent about excluding inappropriate content from Gooru."

Curriki is an online community for creating and sharing curricula and teaching best practices. Curriki:
Provides High Quality Free Resources – Curriki contains over 46,000 free K-12 lessons, units, assessments, and multimedia learning resources across all subject areas.

MYOER  You do not have to be from Michigan to use this resoure! Join your fellow Michigan educators who are already part of the Michigan Online Resources for Educators (MORE) community. Registration is FREE! As a member, you will have access to over 60,000 high-quality, online resources. You will also have free access to convenient tools and applications to make you more efficient in planning for your classroom while meeting the Michigan Content Expectations. More details about these online tools are included below. Why not join?

OERcommons  ISKME created OER Commons, publicly launched in February 2007, to provide support for and build a knowledge base around the use and reuse of open educational resources (OER). As a network for teaching and learning materials, the web site offers engagement with resources in the form of social bookmarking, tagging, rating, and reviewing.

Khan As described on their site: "The Khan Academy is an organization on a mission. We're a not-for-profit with the goal of changing education for the better by providing a free world-class education for anyone anywhere."

Thinkfinity  (Formally Marco Polo) has been around for a while.  Thinkfinity is the Verizon Foundation’s free online professional learning community, providing access to over 60,000 educators and experts in curriculum enhancement, along with thousands of award-winning digital resources for K-12 — aligned to state standards and the common core.  Their mission: CK-12 Foundation is a non-profit organization dedicated to increasing access to high quality educational materials for K-12 students all over the world. We offer free high-quality, standards-aligned, open content in the STEM subjects. By providing these free resources, CK-12 is working toward educational equity for all.

Other resources worth looking at:
Amazon's Wispercast for schools to manage Kindles and Kindle eBooks.


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