Monday, March 14, 2016

Paying It Forward via OER Sharing

My guess is that the best resources, ideas, and strategies you've acquired as a teacher have been shared with you by another educator.  You trust these ideas because you know they've been tested in the classroom and improved upon by teachers like yourself.

Recently sites like Twitter, Pinterest, and even Teachers Pay Teachers have exploded the sharing possibilities.  We can connect with others to find tried-and-true ideas from educators we would never have the opportunity to meet in person.

The Open Education Resource (OER) movement harnesses this power, unleashing the possibilities for teachers to connect with one another, but also creating an opportunity to provide free and relevant educational resources to every student, regardless of zip code.  The idea that the zip code in which a child lives might determine their educational opportunity is something we can work toward eradicating, but only if we, the educators in the field, step up to the plate!

Recently, Liberty Public Schools, was accepted as a #GoOpen district, and we've partnered with Amazon Inspire during their beta phase to share education resources.  To read more about the Liberty OER story, check out the district blog.  I don't know anyone that doesn't love shopping on Amazon, so the idea that educators could use the Amazon platform to share FREE education resources is pretty exciting.

This past weekend at EdCampLiberty, I uploaded some resources to share for the first time via Amazon Inspire.  I questioned whether the resources were good enough or if anyone would really want them, but I took the plunge.  Here are examples of a couple things I uploaded.  One is applicable across subjects and grade levels; another is content-specific.  I tried to put a collection of resources together, rather than uploading them each as separate documents.
Socratic Seminar All-in-One Doc
Macbeth Literary Analysis 

My challenge to you is to pay it forward and share something that works well in your classroom with the OER community.  Don't worry if the resources aren't perfect.  Don't we always find ourselves adapting resources to meet the needs of our students?  So let's get on out there and share. Perfect isn't the point!

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