Well, EDTC300 is wrapping up, against my wishes! This has definitely been one of the most practical and applicable courses I’ve ever taken. In this post I’ll be showcasing some of the ways I’ve (hopefully) helped others learn throughout the past couple of months, as others have certainly helped me!
One thing I noted was that I was one of the only (if not the only) working/experienced teacher in the class. So as soon as I was told I am expected to contribute to the learning of others, I felt suddenly quite a bit of responsibility fall on my shoulders. I suppose because I figured I should be using my experience as best as possible to help the learning of others. This was then done through various forms of technology, but I found that my classmates were the most active on Twitter, so I posted most of my experiences on Twitter, to hopefully help my classmates! Here are a few examples of times I supported the learning of others via my own educational experiences:
In addition to sharing some of my experience, I also shared resources! This was done over Twitter, but also in our Slack Community as well:
I also took some time to read and comment on other people’s blogs, as I was fortunate enough to experience others reading and commenting on mine as well!
So overall, what did I learn about networked learning?
In one of our class discussions a classmate said “I used to think it was better to be offline, than online” in reference to how often times, as educators, we try to erase any digital footprints we have to perhaps appear more professional. After looking through the dozens and dozens of screenshots I’ve posted, how can we say that being offline lends itself to being MORE professional!? Look at the resources I’ve shared with others, the blog posts I read of my fellow classmates, the Twitter interactions we shared regarding professional learning or even teacher related well-being. Being actively engaged online is necessary, in today’s world, to being an effective teacher and I thoroughly believe that. I think that there are obvious benefits to understanding how blogs, Twitter, Slack, etc. all work in terms of possibly using to incorporate in the classroom. However, more impressively, these mediums are so essential to an educators growth as a professional! I sincerely cannot express how much I’ve learned just from being on Twitter for 10 minutes a day. Things about my profession that I haven’t been exposed to in my seven years of experiences. So simply put, we as educators need to broaden our horizons to include an extensive digital professional network. It doesn’t happen overnight, but the ability to share and collaborate with other professionals online is genuinely one of the most valuable tools I think a teacher can put in their pocket!