Thursday, May 19, 2016

What if finding lesson plans was like buying a TV

What if you could shop for free lesson plans like you shop for a TV or anything else on Amazon?  I have had the pleasure of being an early tester for a new Open Educational Resource Platform coming from Amazon Education.  I do not work for them, nor do I get paid anything from them.  I also do not want to work for them, I love kids too much.

But I believe in them, I believe in the people I have met face to face and the people I have given feedback to on the phone.  Their interests are genuine in helping educators find, upload, and help curate, by crowd sourcing good content.  They truly are invested in getting "access" through digital means to all "our kids."  They also listen and adjust, which is important.

Is it perfect yet?  Will it ever be perfect? NO... but that is the expectation, to have something that is truly, ever evolving, growing, and improving.  This is the advantage of this platform.  It is super user friendly to both the user and the producer or the downloader and the uploader.

Amazon has obviously figured out the search and purchase function of products.  They have figured out efficient delivery methods, and they have a built in brand and audience.  They are the King of the online customer based market.  I trust that they will figure this out.

Imagine going to a site and shopping for lesson plans, putting them in a shopping cart for later "purchase" and being able to pick them from multiple filters, like a TV brand or price point.  Imagine lesson plans, before they are able to be uploaded, having to go through checkpoints by the developer to ensure they hit a number of qualifiers.  Now this is not to guarantee they will be perfect, but it is a step in the right direction of vetting resources.

It is better than "teachers pay teachers" where there are very little checkpoints.  Or no checkpoints at all.   This idea of charging to share lessons to benefit "our kids," is wrong.  I encourage you to sign-up for the BETA TEST as you will quickly see the power and the simplicity.  That is the greatness of this platform.  It is really like buying a TV.  Keep in mind it is evolving and growing.  Finding good OER is not easy, it is up to each and every educator to be willing to share.  This is for the people by the people.  So be the people and share your best stuff!

Once we figure out to integrate it with Learning Management Systems like +Schoology WATCH OUT!!!

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