Global Collaboration: Synthesis
It's here! The end of our global collaboration journey! Obviously, with such a big project, there's a lot to talk about here at the end!
Now that the project is finalized, I'm happy to share it here with you all! We separated this project out into two aspects, the Web Presence and the Webquest.
You can click the image to see the website in full!
Our website is a sort of hub for everything we did during this project, and for others to find what they need. It has information, research, testimonials from experts, and more information about what you can do to help save the oceans.
You can click the image to see the webquest in full!
This was my little project during our global collaboration unit! I wanted to, instead of just making a lesson plan, make something really tangible and easy to use right out of the box.
The WebQuest is aimed at grades 5-8, and teaches students all about ocean pollution. It has them reading and watching things, doing experiments, and creating things to educate others and their community.
Obviously, I learned a lot during this process of global collaboration. When working with another country, you learn a lot about yourself and communication!
This was one of those big things I learned during this process. Expectations aren't universal, and they're important to a project like this.
When beginning my own journey with global collaboration, I think there was a lot of issues with expectations. Between our coordinating classes, expectations weren't completely aligned. Between my Canadian partners and myself, there were different expectations.
Not only that, but everyone has different expectations for what is the "minimum" amount of work to do, and things like that need to be addressed. For example, the "minimum" for me is most people's absolute max limit, and my expectation of everyone wanting to do as much work as me is a pretty unfair expectation.
Communication was a huge part of the learning process! I thought I knew plenty about communication, and how to communicate effectively, but this project certainly taught me otherwise.
I had to learn new forms of communication, like using WhatsApp (which I'm
now using regularly for its group messaging capacities!), and using Zoom. I've used Zoom before, but only here and there; it was never the only option I had for communicating like it was during this process. And of course, when Zoom became so important to my project, I had issue after issue with it on my home computer.
I learned a lot about communicating effectively with professors as well, as the "coordinating leader" for our group. This learning experience was useful for me, as I learned a lot about myself through these communication efforts.
I also learned a lot about communicating with others, like experts! We sent emails to so many different professionals in the ocean preservation community, and it was really useful for me as a professional learning this method of outreach.
For myself, personally, I was forced to learn a lot more about teamwork. I like to think I'm easy to get along with, and I'm usually a pretty great team member, but it was definitely different in this project.
I had to learn to step down more than I wanted, and consider other ideas even if they disagreed with the mental vision I had for the project. With big projects, I like taking the lead and shaping things into my vision, but with this project I really had to force myself to hold back a bit more. I'm so used to doing projects with my other EdTech minors, and we all know each other really well. We know each other's strengths and weaknesses, and we know how much effort different people like to put in, so this usually works pretty well, but with strangers I had to learn a lot about listening to other ideas and trying not to overwhelm people with my ideas.
This ties in pretty nicely with teamwork, but I learned a lot about producing a big project like this with people I can only communicate with remotely.
I had a lot of plans for what I wanted to do, like animated videos and a big, wix-built professional website, but I had to learn to step down from some of those ideas because wix doesn't allow much in terms of collaborating, and it's hard to collaboratively make videos remotely. Despite wanting to do some of these things, I had no choice but to learn to step down in this producing stage to use things that were more collaborative like Google Sites and skipping the custom videos.