Saturday, July 25, 2009

Blended Learning - Library Role in Providing Online Instruction

eSchool News reports on results of a U.S. Department of Education study on Blended Learning. The study reveals that students who took all or part of their class online performed better, on average, than those taking the same course through traditional face-to-face instruction.

Given the finding that students do better with a mix of f2f and online instruction, it follows that teacher librarians could work with their classroom teachers and district curriculum leaders to identify or develop curriculum-supporting tutorials or mini-courses. For example, the California School Library Association (CSLA) web 2.0 tutorial for middle school students, Learning 2.0, is a library-generated online course that addresses information literacy issues as it teaches 21st century learning skills. Another CSLA tutorial, Discovering Assistive Technology, is suitable for middle and high school students as well as adults. Librarians can offer these and other tutorials to their students and classroom teachers, and include on the school library website. There are lots of good tutorials and webcasts, short or lengthy, that support or extend classroom learning. Blended learning is more common at the college and university level. Librarians can help move it into K-12 schools.

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