I have delved into online learning in the past. There is no shortage of literature, research and other artifacts on the subject. However, for me this has never stuck. ONL161 brought this elusive subject to life for me. We spent hours in Adobe Connect, posted in Google+, tweeted, blogged, created and shared electronically whatever we had discussed, debated and made decisions on. In this collaborative process we forgot we were learning and had lots of laughs.
ONL161 has been the most interesting and fun course that I have completed to date. Social learning and finding that learning can be embedded in the relationships between people is something new to me. I have always engaged in individual learning, rote and reproduction of learning. I was a product of a system. Engagement in ONL161 changed my perspective of how teaching and learning should be taking place. It is in step with this modern, complex and fast changing world.
I have struggled to understand why current students are so vastly different from my past students. I was asking them to meet me in my space and place. This was a narrow view and this ONLer experience has given me tools and techniques to change my teaching practice to embrace collaborative learning, flexible learning, learning design and concepts such as the flipped classroom. My blog post on Attention today touches on this and Collaboration – Reflections asks important questions that I will need to answer going forward.
Will using technology in my teaching increase my students’ participation, interest and motivation? My students use technology for entertainment and socializing. If I can show them how to use tech for learning, I can reduce my frustration and effort to get them to the end goal i.e. learning. Teachers who are not using digital tools for teaching will be “uber-ised”. The change is occurring, as I mention in my blog-post on Flex-o-learn.
To my friends Maria, Mariya, Linda, Lisa and Lena (PBL Gr2) thank you for teaching me about Swedish köttbullar and new perspectives on topics that I would never have thought about. I learned much from this social interaction. To Darek, Anna and Amir I encourage you to try again when circumstances are better.
eLearning when planned and constructed correctly moves the student from consumption to creatives and also moves the teacher from lecturer/ orator and off-loader to developing opportunities and activities for students to actively learn. I want my students to start a blog of their own. Based on my experience in the two live tweet chats that I participated, I am hooked and must bring it into the classroom. I have never experimented with peer assessment. I want to move from my default tools and default mode of teaching i.e. lecture. My students do share openly, but only in class. They are scared of online sharing. I broke that fear with this course and will use the techniques learned here to achieve the same.
Thanks to the ONL161 team for providing us an opportunity with connecting with like minded professionals across the world.