Congratulations and (very) tentative suggestions
Dear Dr Ramakrishnan,
My congratulations to you and the India Node for such a delightful Statement and best omens for such promising future developments!
Given my scarce acquaintanceship with India-Bharat suggestions on my part may be inappropriate. My apologies for this, though I can't but try comply with your invitation. What follows is so tentative I feel rather embarrassed!
1. In some contexts, a powerful argument would be the access to other cultures the internet (particularly Wikieducator) enable, which may well enrich pedagogical practice.
2. Maybe prizes for teachers producing the best lesson plans, or cross-college collaboration to improve communication flows between different centres, could be appreciated.
3. If target teachers have a low ICT ability on average, or suffer from “fear of technology”, linking wiki skills training to a topic of interest could be useful. For example, discussions of the Great Citizen or Sanskrit pedagogy could be prone to meet higher levels of response and help override any PC "syndrome".
If appropriate within the context, workshops/courses could adopt the format of “wiki for specific purposes” so that teachers develop their skills while enhancing intellectual nourishment. Maybe wiki tip/topic question/topic response using new wiki tip (and previous) could be an attractive format for teachers (?). I don’t know if applicable but quests and storytelling are additional formats teachers can easily incorporate into their daily practice.
4. One of the initial drawbacks wiki format may have is that it’s so “white” and “empty”, novice users may feel somewhat overwhelmed. I don’t know if pair/group work is culturally acceptable/meaningful; if it is, it could be a good starting point, particularly for the first "artwork" in wiki. If it isn’t, then maybe inserting encouraging feedback could make them feel more comfortable with their progress (?). An issue with skills training can lie with trainees not contributing or not deploying those skills once the workshop is over, which might have some impact on the India Node plans in the longer term.
5. Opposed to “wiki culture”, but in some contexts not being credited for own production may be rather shocking; should this be case, the India Node may consider discussing it with WE if necessary (?) WE could then also be envisaged a platform for intellectual production, an alternative to traditional publishing which allows sharing with the community.
I'm rather unsure whether this makes any sense at all! My apologies for not expanding on follow-up actions, I'd really need further details for guidance (e.g. initial centre target No, profile, urban/rural, "average" ICT equipment, percentage with Internet connection and whether used or not...) before daring.
Alex P. Real