Northern New Mexico's Community Network


Kellogg Teacher Training Project

La Plaza Telecommunity was awarded a grant from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to train teachers in Taos, Penasco and Questa how to integrate the Internet into their classrooms and develop online curriculum and class lessons.

Working with the school districts in Taos, Penasco and Questa, La Plaza committed resources, skills and computer facilities to help teachers learn the following:  Basic Internet skill; the Internet and its uses in Education;  current uses of the Internet and WWW in Education;  the use of the WWW as a resource to compliment existing lesson plans; how to create Internet related projects and how to create Web pages containing class lessons.
The training was offered to any teacher interested in learning how to use the Internet and develop an online class lesson.

Through a previous grant from the Kellogg Foundation, La Plaza was able to provide the infrastructure needed for the schools districts in Taos County to connect to the Internet.  Only one school district, Penasco Independent Schools had actually been connected consistently since 1997.  The Questa School District went online in fall, 1998 and the Taos School District went online in February, 1999.

Training was offered to teachers in the three school districts. Approximately 35 teachers participated in the training though not all were able to complete it due to scheduling conflicts and time constraints.  While the training was not specifically a "Train the Trainer" model, the modules were developed so that the trainee could in turn utilize the presentations, handouts and other materials in their classroom or share with their peers.

The Kellogg Teacher Training project has helped:

La Plaza's collaboration with the school districts has been to ensure Internet connectivity and public access.  The Kellogg Teacher Training Project has expanded the need for La Plaza to become the source of computer and Internet training opportunities for school district staff.  La Plaza is willing to work with each school district to help them determine their training needs and assist them in providing the training.  Some of the training curriculum and materials developed through the project is available online.

Community networks similar to La Plaza have an added responsibility of helping school districts not only gain access to the Internet but also provide them with training opportunities and materials.  For the past decade, community networks have been in the forefront of providing Internet access and training in the communities they serve.  With this wealth of experience, community networks or similar type organizations are actually better prepared to collaborate with schools to deliver such training.

Lifelong learning is an essential survival skill for the next millennium.   As more and more Americans go online, ongoing learning from the home will increase.  This will greatly extend the learning opportunities for kids as well as adults. The traditional educational system will not be able to accommodate this type of learning.  School networking and community networking will need to merge around the theme of K-100 lifelong learning to meet the educational demands of the 21st century.

The Kellogg Teacher Project has laid the groundwork to help La Plaza and the schools collaborate to provide Internet and information technology training to school personnel, students and parents.

Online Resources

The teacher training has been integrated into La Plaza's mission to offer Taos County residents Internet access and training to information and communication resources. A directory within the La Plaza web site has being placed online to provide information about the project, lessons learned, training materials and curriculum and completed teacher online lessons.  The web site can be used by a wide array of people.  Those interested in developing their own projects, teachers who need hands-on self directed learning training, students interested in learning how to use the Internet, parents wanting to access information about the Internet, school districts interested in learning more about what La Plaza can offer.

The project has been incorporated into the overall mission of La Plaza by placing the training materials as well as completed teacher projects online.

Training Modules
The following include powerpoint presentations and handouts used in the training classes.

Intro to the Internet and WWW - introduces the beginner to the History of the Internet and it's different components, email, www, gopher, telnet, ftp, etc.  Handout.

Email - learn about the uses of email, how to setup an email software program and how to find online web based free email programs , learned about mailing lists and their importance in the sharing of information via the Internet.  Handout.

Intro to the WWW & Netscape - introduced to the WWW, its vast resources and how to use a browser to surf the Web.  Learn how to configure Netscape Communicator and use it's features. Handout.

Searching the Web - learn about search engines,  search methods and tools on the WWW, , basic searching skills, fine tuning searches, quality control of information and citing electronic information.  Handout.

WebQuests - learn how to integrate Internet information and resources into the classroom and develop your online project.  Handout

Easy Web Page Design - learn to create web pages using Netscape Composer. While the presentation is intended to be used during hands-on training class, it can be used as a self-directed learning aid to using Composer.

Teacher Web Quests

The following teachers have completed their projects. Teachers interested in placing their lesson plans on this web site can contact Nancy Montano at 758-1836, email at

Carol Rael - MESOAMERICAN CULTURES (CENTRAL AND SOUTH AMERICA).  This lesson is intended to familiarize students of  Spanish  with the Meso-American Indians, early inhabitants of Spanish-speaking countries of Central and South America.  The lesson may serve 9th through 12th grade students.

Reyna Gonzales - DRAGONS, DRAGONS, DRAGONS.  After viewing the film Mulan with my students and discussing their favorite characters, I found that dragons sparked their interest but we didn't know much about them so with them in mind, I have created some lessons for them to explore. Intended for K-3.

Rona Ortega -  READ, WRITE & TYPE.  This is a lesson done on the computer with a Read Write & Type CD. Students K-3 learn to master phonics and reading skills as they learn to write.

Julia Montoya - NURSERY RHYME FUN.  I chose the topic of Nursery Rhymes because I teach music K-5 and I found that Nursery Rhymes are an excellent way to teach rhythm, rhyme and drama to students. This lesson will help students become familiar with many different Nursery Rhymes.

Martha Steger - THE LIFE CYCLE OF A BUTTERFLY This lesson began as a project to celebrate Earth Day on April 22nd at our school, Ranchos Elementary, in Ranchos de Taos, New Mexico. Several teachers in the first, second and third grades collaborated in purchasing the live caterpillars and then developed projects in their classrooms that focused on the life cycle of the butterfly. This is the lesson plan that I developed for my Special Education class.

Michelle Chacon - HOT AIR BALLOONING This lesson began as a project to use when my students attended the Taos Mountain Balloon Rally.  This lesson was developed for use with my 4th grade class. This lesson provides the students with an understanding of how hot air balloons are designed, tested, and the parts of a balloon.  Hands on activities have been incorporated to extend and reinforce the concepts.

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