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A classroom in Namibia.

Image courtesy of Caitlinator
Handouts4Teachers is a project to promote the collaborative development of handouts used to support teaching in the classroom, for example worksheets, small group projects, homework sheets for students to practice mastery of new concepts, etc.

Thoughts about why this project is a cool idea

  1. Many teachers (especially relief teachers) keep a book of handy lesson plans, activity sheets and handouts to use in a range of situations. Relief teachers carry such things in the inevitable event that the teacher they are replacing hasn't left work for her class to be doing. Veteran teachers usually have tried and tested lessons and handouts that seem to reliably work! New teachers are desperate for advice, good activities to try, anything! This project could help to collect all of this resource into one mega book of lesson plans, activities and handouts that will help save time and energy trying to find them spread all over the Internet.
  2. Developing a classroom handout requires less time than developing an entire course - so teachers pressed for time can also participate in the WikiEducator project.
  3. Classroom handouts that are produced as free content differentiate themselves from copyrighted handouts because teachers will have the freedom to modify handouts for local pupil needs.
  4. This could become a valuable resource for part-time teachers who are only contracted for the time they teach in the classroom and free handouts can save time in preparing for classes.
  5. Free handouts are a snapshot for illustrating specific concepts (where more course material is needed).
  6. Free handouts are a great way to incorporate learner-centred learning activities
  7. Free handouts have a natural connection to WikiEducator's Culture Node page

What do we need to get started?

This is a new WikiEducator project, and we're in the process of developing ideas to get started.

  1. We need WikiEducators to conduct a web search for existing examples of classroom handout projects that may be available as free content (CC-BY or CC-BY-SA) and to list these links on this page. While we can't use non free content, we may find a couple of good ideas for developing our own free versions.
  2. We need to develop of a few good exemplars as concrete examples of the idea.
  3. We will need to develop supporting tutorials to help newbies get started with collaborating on the Handouts4Teachers project.
  4. We need to transform OLPC's great GameJam concept into a ContentJam or CurriculumJam event with all the resources needed to run a ContentJam.
  5. We need to develop a dedicated Content Infobox template for handouts to facilitate categorisation.
  6. We need to find effective ways of communicating and marketing this project with teachers around the world.
  7. Add your thoughts here.

Thoughts about the technical and format requirements

  1. Handouts are developed collaboratively on WikiEducator for all grades, and all subject areas by small teams.
  2. Using a consensus model the development team decided collectively when the resource is ready for use.
  3. The content is then package in Open Office and the source file is uploaded on WikiEducator for download. This will enable teachers to easily adapt and modify a handout for their own needs and to produce a local pdf print master for the handout.

Prototype projects

A list of first prototypes to help refine the process, ideas for layout and technology choices:

Links to existing free Handout projects

  • Handouts created by Dough Johnson (Technology and Library Issues) [1]
  • Handouts created by John David Stone, Lecturer in Computer Science and Philosophy[2]
  • Handouts and textbook created by Jeffrey W. Schnick (Calculus-Based Physics)[3]
  • Worksheets in pdf (other formats on request) and extensive html notes created by Richard Jones (IB Computer Science programme)[4]
  • Wiki created to host EFL teaching activities and resources. [5]
  • Handouts created by Walter Antoniotti for GED level mathematics. [6]

Some templates for creating tables

  • {{AnswerBox|3}} produces:

  • {{AnswerBoxRows|Title=My Handout|Heading 1|Heading 2}} produces:
My Handout
Heading 1                                                                                                                                                                             
Heading 2