On my project blog for my agency, I just wrote an update on the connectivism and connected learning class. You can find it here.
“join the discussion” is the theme – pick a path, find some peers and join the discussion. i liked very much the video i watched yesterday where George talked about networks being a model, but learning happening through connections… oh he’s just talking about it again, in terms of the difference between constructionism and connectivism. but to have a discussion, there needs to be some relational connection – someone to communicate with…
i’ve been working for the last few years on this idea of networks of support, and so it interests me to hear about this flow of roles from learner to teacher, and back again, into aggregated groups of similarly interested peers. in the work i’ve been doing one of the areas of interest has been reciprocity – how important is it to “give back” and how does it happen (in my work, with people with disabilities perceived as not having an abundance of shareable strengths). so i’m delighted with all these people creating different kinds of diagrams, notes, narratives and postings and sharing them with everyone else.
Stephen: aggregation, remix, repurpose, feedforward… the idea of adding oneself to the body of knowledge by each of creating our own representation of the body of the course. multiplicity, rather than duplication of effort. through the use of the tag #CCK11
George: talking about duplication and how it happens in traditional curriculum and teaching… lovely. so there’s this singular co-learning / growing opportunities that smaller groups and individuals can pursue rather than being one of 30 (or 150) moving in a paced scaffolding.
learning through immersion, which is a kind of mentorship / apprentriceship… someone in a different discussion yesterday was saying that the leaders around us don’t have the time or energy to focus on individual young people and mentor them: this idea of a MOOC might be one way to do that.
I’ve been dipping into this stream of information related to connectivism. The idea that this is a way is exciting, and I love the way that this vast “class” of affiliated people is communicating through the use of the CCK11 hashtag. That in itself seems full of possibilities for community learning. “fragmentation is the easy part” but how to pull together what Siemens calls “a narrative coherence.” Concurrently, I’m taking a graduate class called “Doing Disability Differently” which is about how disability as an idea is constructed and exists alongside the idea of ability, as something opposite – a kind of modernist binary. it’s a great class, terrific prof, smart and thoughtful peers, lots of love. but more self-reflective than I expected in terms of thinking of how the systems of education and medicine shape our concepts of knowledge and social hierarchy. So my usual frustration around these ideas (the idea, for example, that people are more comfortable with disability when they can taxonomise where it fits on a scale) is nicely countered by this stream of tweets about a possible different way of shaping knowledge. So might the methods of CCK11 be a way of looking at “de-schooling” our ideas? “We want to disrupt the notion of what it means to be a teacher,” he says. “We want to disrupt the notion of what it means to be a student.”
I’m also listening to Sir Ken Robinson’s Q & A in which he talks about the intention of The Element and his upcoming sequel, tentatively called “Finding Your Element: How To Live a Life of Passion and Purpose.” Sir Ken’s blog led me to a fascinating little video that I’ve tried to order – we’ll see if they can translate the shipping order from England to send to Canada – “We Are The People We’ve Been Waiting For.” I think it was a CCK11 post that took me to something by him, and from there to his twitter page, and from there to…
It’s odd not to think that this process – what is called in my disability class “discursive” / discourse – enacted through the CCK11 tag is not just the product of an attentional gap but is actually educative in a new way. It’s been fun to visit the blogs of other CCK11 folks and see that we are all confused, and watch how people process this and become okay with it as we are given permission to be 🙂 George Seimens is inspiring in his thinking about alternatives: “the problem of education does not concern me quite as much as the solutions to the problems of education are starting to concern me. Education is not about building better Googlers… not about building better corporate citizens, not about better employees for organizations. … Education has one vital task, to prepare individuals for the vital combat for lucidity; to prepare individuals to a be part of society; to prepare individuals to contribute, to create, to share, to interact” and goes on to say, “we need systems that create optimal capacity for connection.” As Siemens talks about the way that social structures reflect learning methods, in terms of almost endless kinds of social media methods, “in many ways we are renegotiating the perameters by which our society will function democracticaly based on the software tools available to us.”
So this seems like a great opportunity to explore and learn differently, in both micro and macro ways, from some masterful teachers and peers.