One of my class assignments is to post about a recent learning experience – the what, how and depth of the experience. Over the past three months, I’ve had lots of new opportunities to learn more about a couple of topics for which I was already familiar. (yes, my summer was all work and no play – well, there were the conferences in New Orleans and Virginia Beach). One related to writing a grant proposal about how states should support families of children with disabilities. Part of our grant application involved proposing the development of a virtual community of practice among stakeholders across six states. I found some really interesting articles on this topic, particularly from the education world and how teachers were using virtual CoPs to increase their effectiveness in classrooms. How far wev’ve come in our ability to reach out instantaneously beyond our co-workers! All of the learning for this experience was text based on the Internet which was okay as I am stuck in the middle of the digital divide. I know enough about the lingo – apps, social media, wikis, RSS feeds, etc. – to sound cool, but really don’t know what I am doing! In my continued search of virtual CoPs, I came across one for practitioners interested in person-centered thinking populated by people from at least 4 countries. Very cool. This seriously energized my interest as I learn best hands on – joining and jumping in…like this blogging experience! So, whether we are funded or not (I’ll know in 2 weeks), my brain is perculating all kinds of ideas on how to start a virtual CoP using facebook, blogs, videos, del.icio.us, etc.