Week one Tech class

Identify (1) the steps you took to further your own learning,

Steps I have taken to further my learning are continued education through many different universities to keep a current teaching certificate including, Technoology for Educators (ten years ago) and Concept Based Curriculum ( I loved this class) and now this math program for my masters in K-8 Mathematics. I have also attended the SDE conference on differentiated instruction in Las Vegas. There was a lot of information I would totally do it again. I am currently interested in Singapore Math and looking for conferences that offer some training with the program.

Steps I have take for this class was spending my weekend getting familiar with the different programs that we will be using. I was trying to read the different help sections. Unfortunately I am a person that learns by watching and doing so this takes me much longer than others.

and (2) the way that you contributed to the learning of others in the class 

How will I contribute to the learning of others? I hope to do that by participating in conversations and also by feeling comfortable enough to share my ideas. I hope to find a group of educators that I can maintain contact with after the class to continue this process. I also believe that a good discussion will contribute so I plan on making decent contributions to the conversation on blogs. Those are things I plan on doing to contribute  to the learning of others.

What is a Connectivist MOOC?

So far all I can do is reflect on what I have read about connectivist MOOCs. I don’t fully understand what they are but I think I understand that they were created as a way to exchange and access knowledge under the belief that knowledge is around us in the world and not owned by one person. The way to access this knowledge is to discuss and interact with others.

            So does that mean the connectivists are the people that facilitate these knowledge sharing sessions, Or is a connectivist anyone that participates?

While reading I came across an interesting quote which led me to another question:

The following quote comes from the Wikipedia section on connectivist MOOCs;

“Summing up connectivist teaching and learning, Downes states: “to teach is to model and demonstrate, to learn is to practice and reflect.”

 I work with many low level learners that take weeks to practice and use a skill on their own and even then the skill is not mastered. So I ask; What understanding does one need to be able to practice and reflect. Is there a time that is too early to “reflect” in the learning process. If a student is still learning a process and cannot practice on their own to what extent can they reflect on something they are not grasping yet?

I relate this to a personal experience. I was very withdrawn the first session because I didn’t understand what this learning process was going to look like. I didn’t even know where to begin to ask questions. The conversations going on were beyond my knowledge and I felt really out of place. I was so overwhelmed. I think of how my students feel, I have low level learners tier 2 and 3 if you are familiar with the RTI model for interventions. The deeper understanding questions are impossible for them to deduct but when I tell them the answer they don’t retain it either because there are so many gaps they don’t understand concepts. How do these students begin to reflect?

What attitudes will I need to be successful?

             The attitude that will serve me best in this session is “you get out what you put in.” Now this is always the case but in the past I have been able to sit and listen and just do the work assigned without much thought being put in to what I would like to gain from the experience. Yes it is asked at the beginning of each class but the reason we take classes is to gain a better understanding and that is usually the response you hear. In this format you need to have something to bring to the table and it can be anything you chose. I think this format promotes a deeper understanding because you chose to discuss what you are interested in.

 

            Another attitude that I will need is patience. By that I mean patience for learning this new method of networking. So far it has been very frustrating setting up the new accounts keeping them straight and then linking everything. I know this will get better but still I need patience.

            Next I will remain open to new thoughts and ideas of others. I have always been open to others ideas and thoughts so I don’t see this as a major challenge. 

 My intro: http://smilebox.com/playBlog/4d7a55784f4449354e7a453d0d0a&blogview=true

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2 thoughts on “Week one Tech class

  1. Your reflections on your own learning and relating that to your students says a lot about your understanding of their needs. One of the best ways to learn is to “do”, and this course will show us how to do just that. Your comment about getting out what you put in is true – this is not the type of course where we can just put ourselves on autopilot, listen to a lecture, read a book, and write a paper. Basically, we will learn as much as we want to, or can – and that’s pretty exciting! I like your attitude “checks” at the end of your post – good to remind ourselves about the mindset we’ll need to have!

  2. Thank you for your blog post, Courtney. You’ve given me a lot to think about. I’m pondering your question about how lower level learners can reflect. I know that reflection is a key piece of the learning process, of life experience, really, but most often I find myself careening along from one deadline to the next so that I don’t give myself much chance to pause to reflect. It’s good that our weekly blogs for this MOOC will force me to reflect. I guess I see a recursive process of practice-reflection-more practice-more reflection…, and maybe that would work for any level learner. And sometimes the reflection just amounts to: “I can do this: _____ . I am still working on this: ____.” What do you think?

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