Your mission is to connect with your team members and the other educators involved in this project. Connections will take place asynchronously as well as synchronously. Some of your partners will be on the exact opposite side of the world so real-time connections will be a challenge. However you must make the effort to connect. That first contact and then follow-up messages are so important for reassuring your partners that you are there are willing to work.
Once connected, now use your online skills for effective communication with your team members. Don't be afraid to say you do not understand something. Ask for their opinion and their advice. Discuss problems and reach solutions together. Being in different time zones brings its own challenges for communication and understanding. Communicate often and communicate clearly and responsibly. Use the Ning, use the wiki page and use other methods that you and your team can agree on, including email and MSN.
Consensus and conciliation can be reached through online cooperation. This takes the first two 'Cs' to be in place (connecting and communicating) and once you are doing these you can cooperate on building a knowledge base on the wiki share resources and ideas. Do not be offended or take it personally if by mistake your work is deleted temporarily off the wiki, this happens sometimes and we are all learning how to work in a wiki-centric environment. Work together on improving your space and cooperate by being active online and on the wiki.
If you do not contribute to the online spaces provided for this project we cannot tell what you have done. This is not a project where you can hand in the finished essay on the due date. This project means you must be communicating, cooperating and contributing on a daily basis. Contribute to the Ning by sharing your audio and video files about you and your home/country and sending messages to other students. Contribute to the wiki by posting comments to the discussion forum and adding content to the wiki page for your topic. Contribute to your team by recording short video clips for your partners to use in their videos. Do not be a non-contributor and lurk somewhere in the darkness. Come out and be part of the construction.
You and your team members must collaborate on the wiki to show a combined effort in developing a knowledgeable page with lots of relevant hyperlinks and references for your topic. To collaborate means to work together to solve a problem and that is what you must do. This takes communication and cooperation. You cannot sit back and rely on others to do all of the thinking for you. You need to be in there as well collaborating with your team, sharing ideas and making suggestions.
This project requires you to create a wiki page as a team. It also requires you to create an individual short video based on your topic and sub-topic. This is difficult, it is challenging and there is no easy answer for content. You decide, you use your creativity and design and plan your final video. Make sure you include clips from your team members as well to show a global perspective on your topic.
When the hard work is done you can celebrate your achievements. Part of this celebration is providing reflection and review to your partners and reflecting yourself on the many parts of this project. You will find that the success of this project will be in the underlying achievements, not always the academic ones. You will have found new friends around the world through your online interactions. You will also have made a difference to the world by synthesizing what you have learned into a multimedia event that can be shared globally. That really is worth celebrating!