Blended Learning – FTE & Gooru

The Economic Way of Thinking in the Blended Learning Classroom

FTE is partnering with Gooru, an online educational non-profit based out of Palo Alto, California. Through this partnership, FTE is creating and publishing economics collections on Gooru’s website so teachers from around the world can access FTE’s expert knowledge. Collections are complete lessons that cover economics topics and are filled with engaging multimedia resources, such as videos, slides and websites. FTE is creating more collections, so check this site regularly.

Econ Eddie says, “Teaching the ‘Economic Way of Thinking’ just got a lot more interesting. Stay tuned!”

Blended Learning:  Technology Opens New Opportunities to Teach the Economic Way of Thinking

Over the past year, teachers in FTE programs have reported their interest in what’s known as “the flipped classroom” – that is, the use of blended-learning pedagogy.  For many, that interest is driven by school or district pressure and policies in addition to a professional desire to acquire a pedagogy that has shown great promise for increasing student mastery and leveraging teacher effectiveness in an era of growing class size.

Phase I:  Collections for Teachers

Therefore, when FTE trustees introduced the staff to Gooru, we discovered an opportunity to assist you in this endeavor while advancing our mission of teaching the economic way of thinking.  In 2012, we entered into what we believe to be a very productive partnership with GooruLearning.org.  Gooru is a non-profit dedicated to the “universal right to education,” and is perhaps most simply described as an educational search engine for the assembly of “collections” of internet resources on any educational topic.   Gooru started with the STEM topics – science, technology, engineering, and math.  FTE joined in as Gooru was looking to expand beyond STEM into the social sciences, and our first joint project, “Introduction to Economics” was completed and made public earlier this year.

“Introduction to Economics” is a Gooru course - or set of collections - keyed to a taxonomy of topics that constitute a semseter-long, standards-based economics course for secondary school students of all levels.  Until “Introduction to Economics,” the intended audience for Gooru collections was students.  Econ Eddie introduced a new focus in that the “Introduction to Economics” collections are intended for teachers.  These collections were compiled from existing FTE resources and combined with resources produced by organizations that have partnered with the FTE and/or share the FTE’s commitment to fostering economic literacy by teaching economic reasoning skills.

Click FTE – Gooru Collections for Teachers” in the navigation bar to the left to access the “Introduction to Economics” collections.

Phase 2:  Facilitating Blended Learning

In 2013,  FTE received funding from the Jaqueline Hume Foundation to continue development of blended learning tools using the Gooru interface.  In Phase II, Gooru sessions will be incorporated in summer, 2013 Economics for Leaders programs, and Econ Eddie will produce a series of Hot Topic Gooru collections ready for next-day use in the classroom.  .  Phase 2 also includes teacher surveys and evaluation of the effectiveness of the materials in promoting student mastery of economic reasoning.  Our intent is that throughout the spring semester of the 2012-13 school year and the fall semester of the 2013-14 school year, teachers working to implement blended-learning will receive a continuing stream of ready-to-use collections that teach the critical thinking skills of economic reasoning through analysis of current events.

The Hot Topics are accessible from the red Teacher Resources pull-down menu at the top of the FTE website, and from the red link in the navigation column to the left of this page.

Click “How to Use FTE – Gooru Collections” in the navigation bar to access a brief tutorial and links to ready-to-use Hot Topic collections for students.

Blended Learning Links:  Make This Your Base of Operations

From this site, you can access everything you need to venture into the world of blended learning – where students receive direct instruction online and come to your classroom for practice, coaching, and enhancement of their learning.  Explore the links to the left to learn more about Gooru,  to find how-to support for your initial forays into blended learning, and to access ready-to-use, high-interest student lessons in the economic way of thinking.

Click How to Make FTE – Gooru Collections Your Own” in the navigation bar to access a brief tutorial on how to copy, edit, and customize Hot Topic collections to fit your varied classroom and student characteristics.

About Our Partner Gooru (www.goorulearning.org)
Gooru At Gooru, we believe that education is a human right.

All too often, however, there are barriers to delivering it. That’s why we’re building an open and collaborative online community that can transform the way K-12 teachers help students reach their full potential. Gooru provides a free personalized learning solution that enables teachers to create, curate, and share collections of web resources on any K-12 topic. With millions of multimedia resources and quiz questions, Gooru makes it easy to discover topic-relevant and standards-aligned content to address specific students’ needs. Gooru is developed by a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization and supported by grants from the Gates Foundation, Hewlett Foundation, and Office of Naval Research, among others. Join us in making a difference. Become a fellow Gooru by visiting www.goorulearning.org.