We are through the first day, for better or worse, and onto the next thing. Just wanted to check in, provide a little information, and solicit any feedback you’d like to offer.

1. I’m happy to see that most of you have navigated through the posts and replies on Discourse: it looks like everyone has mastered the basics of signing on and getting around. Did you know that you automatically earn badges for doing special stuff, like replying to others, using markdown language? I’ve added a couple new badges (Citizen and Adventurer) that can award to posts and posters of special merit. If you haven’t checked out the New User Guide or done the short markdown tutorial I recommend doing so. Discourse is the place where we will be trying to build a community of inquiry, and to establish social presence. It doesn’t have to be completely serious all the time! Play is good.

2. The final due date for Discourse assignments is the end of the unit: once we move on, we’ve moved on. Since being present, and being involved with others, being intellectually engaged, are what we’re looking for, it will be most helpful if you are on the same schedule as everyone else. That means, for instance, participating in the ‘ Community of inquiry’ discussion before today ends, and we move onto the ‘Social Presence’ discussion. Let’s say that and assignment posted at 11:30 pm today, should be complete before the next one goes up, at 11:30 tomorrow?

3. Group meetings will take place on Discord, because it’s available to everyone all the time. Our only Zoom meetings will be the whole class meeting on the first day of each unit: that’s next Wednesday. You can use Discord for videochat, or just chat, anytime. Let me know if you have any issues with video quality. Some of these may be across the system, or the world …

3. In order to know what’s going on, I strongly recommend putting all the Events Calendar events and assignments on your personal calendar. Though they are always there, on the website. Rather than ask me when something is due, you can find out for yourself!