Midterm Breather

This picture makes me breathe easier.

 

The week of October 19th offered a much needed midterm breather for myself and our ECI831 classmates.  Following are my reflections on the questions posed… 

What are your thoughts so far on open & networked learning?  

  • I love the concept of open and networked learning but am still at an entry level in terms of my comfort level and familiarity with tools.  I have had a couple of crazy busy weeks in my work and personal life which hasn’t helped as EVERYTHING is taking me more time than I actually have, but I am working through that.
  • I appreciate we are able to go in different directions with our learning as it is a form of self-directed professional development which I think is very worthwhile.  I value that some guidelines are provided to help structure our weekly learning but we are not bound to it. 
  • The concept of connecting with others from around the globe excites me.  I look forward to the opportunities this may create.
  • This is an engaging and exciting new frontier and I am excited about the journey.
  • There is a lot of room for me to grow personally and professionally by being open to the learning that is taking place. 

 What are the pros and cons of this type of learning experience? 

  • Must become more efficient in using tools and in finding my comfort level in being out there in cyberspace.  One of the articles getting us ready for our discussion mentioned you have to work at social networking in order to be effective.  This requires conducting researching, becoming informed, commenting on others blogs, developing and establishing your own presence, etc.  
  • I am still a little uneasy about the whole concept of ‘sharing’ in online.  I think my fear stems from my limited knowledge of its capabilities.  I look forward to learning and overcoming some of my fears as we progress with this class. 

How can we improve this learning experience?  

  • I may actually need some one-on-one help to get me headed in the right direction…skype, telephone, or something.  Some part of me still wants to resort to some form of ‘traditional’ communication!  SORRY!

Does any of this inform the way you teach or learn (or could/should teach and learn)?

  • I am absolutely certain it will but am still trying to find the fit.  I am hoping to come up with something as an initial Career Development project.
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~ by lewisv on October 25, 2010.

7 Responses to “Midterm Breather”

  1. I don’t think we ever become efficient at using these social networking tools. I suppose I am really saying I don’t achieve much sustained depth in my connections. My networks continually expand and that means my time per connection becomes more limited. It is rather like what we face in the classroom, too many students and too little time to engage each. It is all so like a cocktail party (does anyone go to such parties any more?). I feel the same way about the multitude of tools available. I know far more than I have time to use. It is an embarrassment of riches these days.

    I have a core PLN now and a core of tools I use frequently. We all design our own presence, community, and toolbox of applications. If you like, Skype me: stangea

  2. I think it is natural to be cautious when we are new to some of the online technology (I feel the same way!). I especially like your comment “I appreciate we are able to go in different directions with our learning as it is a form of self-directed professional development which I think is very worthwhile”. I feel the same way about this opportunity to determine where my learning will take me.

    Great reflective post

    Mike

  3. Thanks for your thoughts, Vanessa. These are really helpful for me in the future as I continue to shape this experience – and I have very happy to see that you are seeing this as mostly positive.

    Did you get a chance to watch Dean Shareski’s Moral Imperative video? http://k12onlineconference.org/?p=610

    It may help on the topic of why we might want to share more widely. Just a thought.

    Thanks!

    • Yes, last week I watched Dean Shareski’s Moral Imperative video. The message was powerful and I appreciated the examples of ‘sharing’ included in the video. I thought the examples were indicative of the multitude of educational opportunities possible using technological tools as a means to share ideas. Thanks for including it on our course links.

  4. I understand what you mean by wanting to resort to “traditional” communication – I actually use a combination of “traditional” and “new” technologies because it allows me take advantage of the most useful features available from each. I don’t think of one technology replacing another so much as technologies being used in combination, depending on the situation and the task at hand.

  5. Vanessa, I do agree on what you said about open learning environment. I am not yet accustomed to that though I like it. I like the fact I am learning many things everyday. But I like to see someone. It’s just the old traditional way!

  6. This is a very exciting point: “I appreciate we are able to go in different directions with our learning as it is a form of self-directed professional development which I think is very worthwhile. I value that some guidelines are provided to help structure our weekly learning but we are not bound to it.”
    Think of how we can also harness the power of social media with our students to enable them to pursue their passions and be self-directed in their learning! I agree with Mike in that we will not be able to master every new tool at our fingertips. But the willingness to experiment and try to find those that are a good fit for our teaching and learning experiences will make all of the difference. Great thoughts!

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