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Ubuntu Community Learning Project and Ubuntu US Teams

Ubuntu Community Learning Project

Due to my involvement in the Ubuntu Classroom project, I became involved with the Beginners Team Education Focus group earlier this year. The #ubuntu-classroom channel began hosting Beginners Team classes. From there the Ubuntu Community Learning Team was born.

Over the past several months the team has been working through licensing choices, Moodle deployment (theme still to be completed), governing and user infrastructure. We’ve begun working with teams within the community and have met with the Canonical Training folks to discuss materials and overlap of services.

Now, we need you! Martin Owens has also posted about it, so if you’re interested and haven’t yet, have a peek at that post as well as he outlines some of the skills we need. Essentially, we need brains! Your expertise in your given area of Ubuntu, as mentioned on our wiki page we have 5 categories:

  1. How to Use Ubuntu
  2. How to Maintain Ubuntu
  3. How to Develop Ubuntu
  4. How to Spread Ubuntu
  5. How to Teach Ubuntu

We have a Moodle infrastructure deployed, but we’re also working with Classroom to host IRC-based sessions and we’d like to see course material (within Moodle or not) being worked on for live sessions that LoCo teams can give to their own users (on spreading Ubuntu, perhaps?) and to the public (Intro to Ubuntu classes? Server classes?). Martin’s also started developing Server courses and releasing them on his blog and linked to the Maintaining Ubuntu wiki page which will probably be incorporated into the Moodle infrastructure. I’ve volunteered to help start writing and the Ubuntu Pennsylvania team will be teaching some of the first Desktop classes.

Don’t think you can contribute to course development yourself? We also need expert reviewers and less experienced folks who can take a look at the coursework to give us feedback about how friendly it is to someone no familiar with the subject matter.

So, interested in finding out more and joining us? Browse our wiki for project details, or just drop by #ubuntu-learning on chat.freenode.net and ask us questions directly. We’ve tried to make it as easy as possible for people to join the team, simply drop a note to the Ubuntu Learning Mailing List or introduce yourself in #ubuntu-learning. Please don’t be shy about an introduction! We ask people to introduce themselves so we can get a better idea of what kind of talent we have and need within the project, whether your talent is “brilliant sysadmin and experienced teacher” or “student who is interested in testing our material” we need and welcome you!

Our next meeting is scheduled for 8pm EDT August 17th / 00:00 UTC August 18th in #ubuntu-meeting so please feel free to join us.

Ubuntu US Teams

Another project I’ve been working with lately is the US Teams project. This is the mentoring team for all the the US teams and this year we reorganized the project and elected a new board and mentors. I worked with Dan Trevino to launch our new US Teams Planet for aggregating the news feeds for teams in the US (it’s been a great way to see what other teams are up to!). And we tapped the Drupal talents of John Crawford to launch a new version of our website.

The latest team news? We’re now publishing articles on our new website! There is a lot of LoCo documentation out there, but it can sometimes be tricky to find really useful stuff. Having identified the vital resources, our articles have the following purpose:

  1. Identify the documentation that we reference most for US Teams, write short articles highlighting where to find this documentation so it puts it on the radar of more people, and contributing back to the main documentation as we can
  2. Come up with new ideas, write articles about it, contribute back to the main documentation
  3. US News – approvals, sharing successful new ideas
  4. US-specific tips about running a LoCo in this country

Thus far we’ve published two articles on the site: Joining a US LoCo Team and Congratulations New York!, and so far have we’ve snagged the talents of Dan Trevino and Amber Graner for at least 3 more articles in the pipeline. Have an idea for an article you’d like to read or write? Please let me know!

Our next team meeting is scheduled for August 26th 2009 – 10pm EDT, 9pm CDT, 8pm MDT, 7pm PDT in #ubuntu-us – join us then to discuss the project, or drop by #ubuntu-us any time to get help with your US-based LoCo, share experiences, request a mentor or just shoot the breeze with other folks in the US who participate in LoCo teams.

One Comment

  • John

    I really enjoyed reading and appreciated this blog post. It gives me hope. I consider myself someone who is really motivated about moving things forward, and when I get behind an ideal or cause, I get behind it full force. The reason I say that your blog post gives me hope is that I am a member of a LoCo (whose state I shall not name to avoid the possibility of embarassing anyone) that seems to be on it’s deathbed. There has been little to no activity on the mailing list in over a year, and with the exception of one other member, I never seem to be able to establish any meaningful communication with anyone else, and I’ve been thinking lately that I need to make contact with some of the people who are running successful, approved to LoCo teams to try and figure out where we are going wrong. I attend as many community events as I can, talk to people, and hand out CDs, but I am just one person, and this one person can only do so much and is starting to feel icreasingly isolated.

    So thanks again for at least giving me some kind of starting point to make contact with people who might be able and willing to help me get my team off life support and back on the road to recovery. The information if much appreciated. I know you can see my email from the contact form, so if there is anything else you can or would like to share regarding team building, please don’t hesitate to contact me directly. Thanks.