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OCCDLA OR COmmunity Colleges Isle Image from training session January 2009.

Congratulations and WELCOME to Our New Avatars!
 We're one step closer to offering live classes on OR Community Colleges Isle...
During the last half of January, our core island team assisted thirty nine new Oregon avatar instructors over five three and a half hour sessions to enter the metaverse, and begin contemplating what teaching and learning in Second Life might mean for them. Instructors from eight of our seventeen institutions and a wide variety of disciplines were represented. During spring and summer term, the team will be helping as many instructors as we can to flesh out their ideas to use Second Life in their classes- stay tuned for the next exciting phase of development!

Avatar Boot Camp @ ITC E-Learning 2009
Does  your avatar need a little more style? Join us!
On Saturday February 21st from 8:30 to 11:15 a.m. (PDT and Second Life time are the same) our core island team will be leading a pre-conference workshop- "Avatar Boot Camp". This is a beginner to intermediate workshop for novice (but not new) avatars to learn how to become more expressive and capable through selection of shapes, skins, clothing, accesories, hair, and gesturing.  If you are planning on attending ITC E-Learning 2009, join us for a fun session! A shout out of pre-conference thanks to Stargazer Blazer, Instructional Designer at Miami University, Dean of Insight Virtual College in Second Life and master virtual Jewelsmith who will be volunteering her time to assist during our session.

Stepping into Science in Second Life
Regulus Darkstone attends a one day workshop to return and share what he's learned with all.
on January 30th, an online conference focusing on what Second Life means for teaching and learning science was held, and while some of us were training, we were also double-timing our understanding of teaching and learning in virtual spaces by sending Regulus Darkstone (Dr. Michael Russell of MHCC) to "Stepping Into Science." To share what he found out, he's written this wonderful report- check it out!

Upcoming Spring Training Sessions
Did you want to train with us winter term and missed us? Don't worry- spring offers another chance.
During this round of training there were twice as many avatars that requested training than made it through- some couldn't make it for scheduling conflicts, others faced insurmountable temporary technical issues. If you are an Oregon Community College faculty or staff member interested in exploring Second Life, don't worry! We will be offering another round of traning sessions spring term, and will send you a link to the participation request form directly when we make the general announcement. If you reported having technical issues trying to reach us the first time, you will be given priority in workshop participation selection.

Cascades Meeting Area Getting a Facelift
Soon to come: Seating that won't face your back to the fire. ;)
Now that the island has been stable in its layout, we're returning to our meeting spaces to improve their apperance and function. First up- Regulus Darkstone (Dr. Michael Russell of MHCC) will be making improvements to our Cascades fire pit meeting area. Don't worry, if you show up for next Monday's meeting and the space isn't finished, we can go hang out  in the sandbox or tree house together.

Drop-in Help Available Weekly
Stuck trying to get something done in Second Life? Let us 'share brain' and help you.
We offer times weekly that you can come to our island sandbox and get immediate drop in assistance- our island schedule calendar is updated Mondays by 2 PM. If you want assistance with anything about Second Life- Building, scripting, finding places, tools to help you teach, social questions- come by and let us help you!

February brings Valentines Day
Our island is festive and seasonal with help from in-world residents.
A shout out of thanks to DharmaPuppy PinkLady for her vigilant service in keeping our island festive- this month, she's decorated in honor of St. Valentine. We'd like to also thank Ofelia Laval of Island Depot Flowers who generously donated some of our Valentines Day decor, keeping the sharing spirit of Second Life alive- Mahalo!

Island Meeting Spaces Available
Come watch a movie together, meet in a treehouse, or hang our around a camp fire, and more.
Do you have online meetings where you work with teams toward a shared goal? Do you have a want to connect better with other faculty in your discipline across the state (or world for that matter? ) This is YOUR ISLAND! Schedule virtual meeting space for two to fifty participants with our island scheduling request form. We've added a theater that will seat up to 40 avatars that can stream movies into Second Life- think of using this the next time you assign your distance education students media to watch- we may be able to schedule you a group showing and discussion session.

Ideas or suggestions? Join us!
Weekly In-World meetup: Mondays @ 2PM
If you have any comments, suggestions, or just want to hang out with us in avatar form to see what a fun and exciting topic teaching and learning in virtual worlds is, please join us Mondays at 2 PM on OR CC Isle at our Cascades Meeting Circle. (Note- we don't meet fnals week.) You can always find out what's up and coming on the agenda (and any additional project information at our main communication site.) If you have direct questions, please feel free to email me.

To longer days and the return of the warm sun!

Monica Martinez-Gallagher, Project Coordinator
(SL:MonicaMarlo Martinek)
Second Life Oregon Community Colleges Island

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