Tag Archives: future

Is Linear the Right Approach?

Many of our conversations around eLearning in Ontario involve the idea of online course “content”.  As schools make plans for online learning next year, teachers want to know, “Is there a course?”.

Years ago, when I was teaching full time online, my principal often said, “We are not in the business of content delivery, we are in the business of learning!”.

In one conversation about content this year, a teacher said to me, “Well, wouldn’t you just have the students build their own content?”.

This article in my zite feed caught my attention this morning:

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As we think about how our students learn, how does it impact our thinking about what online learning should look like?

Shared by Donna Miller Fry (@fryed)

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The Reason We Need to Keep Going

#OSSEMOOC is about connecting educators and helping to build technology capacity, connected leadership and professional learning networks. #OSSEMOOC has used a variety of mediums to bring educators together and enhance their best practices and model their life-long learning for the benefit of themselves, their PLN and most importantly their students.

Being a connected educator, can bring you out of your comfort zone (that zone where the learning really takes place!) in the pursuit of professional growth, student engagement and student success.

@MsEsClass needs no convincing about being connected learners! They are enthusiastic about using technology and love to share their learning.

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I have this tweet on my bulletin board-these are the faces of truly connected learners and the reason why we need to keep moving forward with integrating technology into our classrooms.

Shared by Stacey Wallwin, e-Learning Contact, Superior Greenstone District School Board (@wallwins)

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Digital Citizenship: What is Our Role as Educators?

As we move into the month of May, OSSEMOOC is focusing on the topic of Digital Citizenship.

How can you participate, share and learn?

Our Tuesday discussion (8 p.m. EDT) looks at public attitudes toward the use of devices: https://ca-sas.bbcollab.com/site/external/launch/meeting.jnlp?sid=2014006&password=M.CC409A4B054038F779056233AAE40C

Together, we are reading the book It’s Complicated: The Social Lives of Networked Teens (by Danah Boyd) available for download (free) here: http://www.danah.org/books/ItsComplicated.pdf

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As well, we are suggesting that #digitalcitizenship and #digcit would be great hashtags to follow on Twitter this month to help push your thinking in this area.

We are collating some online #digitalcitizenship resources in the Scoop.it page here.  Check back often to see what has been added, or subscribe to the feed for this page (use the green Follow button when you get there).

It looks something like this:

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The OSAPAC Digital Citizenship group will be joining us, as well as some other special guests.

Check out The Digital Citizen, a paper.li by Mark Carbone for new resources and thinking on this topic.  You can subscribe to the paper by providing your email address.

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Remember that this is a Connectivist MOOC, and we all share our learning with others.  Special thanks to Andy Forgrave and Deb McCallum for sharing 30 Days of Learning in Ontario in unique, collated formats.

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As you blog, use the #OSSEMOOC tag so others are able to find and respond to your thinking.

 

Keep learning, connecting and sharing!

#OSSEMOOC 20140429: The Future of Learning

As we wrap up our focus on blogging and move into our focus on Digital Citizenship, we are inviting you to have a conversation with us on Tuesday evening around what learning will look like five years from now.  Where are we going in Ontario?

We initially held this conversation about a month ago as part of the stakeholder consultation process for eLearning Ontario as the group moves forward with their work in providing the tools  Ontario students need for technology-enabled learning.  Since then, the new vision document has helped inform some of what we are doing as we have a clearer impression of where Ontario is going.

The stakeholder consultation process closes on April 30, and we would like to offer OSSEMOOC participants one more opportunity to provide feedback. Please join us on Tuesday, April 29 at 8 p.m. EDT  [here] for a live discussion opportunity.  The online room opens at 7:30 for set up.  If you are new to collaborate, you will need some time to get set up, so feel free to start any time after7:30.

We value your input to this process.  Conversations about learning in the future have been very rich as we have moved around the province working with different stakeholder groups.  I know this will be a catalyst for further thinking about student needs in Ontario as we move from great to excellent!

If you are unable to join us, please use this form to provide input via this Feedback Form. Thank you for taking the time to help us make the most informed decisions possible around the tools our learners need to succeed.

Your OSSEMOOC Team

Day 23:Leaping Ahead With Our Own Learning

Written and shared by Brenda Sherry.

The original post can be found here: http://bsherry.wordpress.com/2014/04/12/otrk12-and-google-summit-learning/

OTRK12 AND GOOGLE SUMMIT LEARNING

My friends Donna Fry and Mark Carbone, co-creators of the #ossemooc  have put out a call for us to share our learning during this month of April and, as always, it takes me a little while to get my posts onto the blog!

Luckily for me, I had two great experiences last week,  one at the #otrk12 conference and one at the #gafesummit in Waterloo.   Starting withStephen Hurley’s examples of passion-based learning at OTRK12 was wonderful and I enjoyed presenting to the e-learning teachers about creating dynamic virtual discussions and seeing Jaclyn Calder’s presentation about the Grader App for D2L with awesome options for providing differentiated and timely feedback to learners.   It’s wonderful to see what an amazing teacher like Jaclyn does with technology!

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While I could share all the tips and tricks that I learned at #otrk12 and the #gafesummit,  I think I’d rather share a few observations that I have mulling around and arising from these 2 great learning events.

A principal from my school board approached me at the Google Summit a little distraught that she had perhaps purchased the wrong technology this year. She has provided her teachers and students with a variety of tools like  ipads, laptops, desktops and Chromebooks.  She seemed a little worried that she had made a wrong choice and should have bought more Chromebooks.  I reminded her, that regardless of how ‘feel good and for the cause of all children and teachers everywhere’ this event undoubtedly was, it was also a Google event after all,  and their mission was to make her feel as though Google products were the bomb. Obviously – they succeeded!

I assured her that an effective technology ecology in her school would also include some higher-end media creation tools like her computers and her ipads, and that she’d want to remember that the ability to do some computing with computers is also a really important skill for our students today.

I remember when Nicholas Negroponte from MIT started to predict that ubiquity would be a game changer in our adoption of technology but that rather than getting simpler, as they should over time,  there was this interesting phenomenon with computers called ‘featuritis’ whereby software developers keep the software getting more complex and complicated (bloated and expensive) rather than cheaper.  Google seems to have figured that out.  Make the browser do most of the work, and the machine could remain inexpensive,  although not as robust.   Maybe robust is not what we are looking for in education anyway.  Easy (for teachers)  seems to be the preferred approach when it comes to technology.   I’m not in complete agreement with this, but I’m learning to accept it.   It is what it is.

People often ask me if I think things are suddenly changing, and while I’m hopeful,  I’m still cautious because I’m not sure it’s the technology that has been holding us back.   We’ve been able to connect our students around the world with blogs since about 2005 and with global projects using forums and list serves since the 1980s.  How many of us jumped on board?  We’ve had extremely rich sites sharing how-to’s of authentic learning and Project Based Learning for more than two decades.   Were we on board then?

We have had Ministry Licensed products that allow multimedia creation and assistive technology for our students for another decade or so.  Were we all making use of these?  When I tell people that my students and I were blogging with other classrooms across the world almost 10 years ago now, and we did this by taking turns all throughout the day on two desktop computers,  they sometimes look at me strangely – like they couldn’t imagine doing that without the Chromebook cart rolled down to the classroom or students 1:1 on their own devices.   They complain that there isn’t enough technology, and yet their classroom computer is often sitting silently in the corner reserved for teacher email.  What’s up with that?

I’m reminded that early adopters will always be willing to put in the countless hours that lead them to mastery of technology tools (and other things) if they feel that will  transform their classrooms – that hasn’t changed much since computers were first introduced into classrooms.

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Despite my observations, and my confusion about slow progress in educational technology, I refuse to become cynical.  Instead, I’m telling myself that it’s the ubiquity and access that will make the difference this time around.  Now that educators can leap ahead with their own learning through connected networks, they are not bound any longer by the limits of their own school building or in-services for learning…they can connect with and  support each other and learn not only how to use these tools, but what effective use looks like.

Now that we can share our success stories and connect more widely through social media and through networks like the #ossemooc there is no reason to ‘wait for the learning’ – we can just go out and get it!  It was exciting to see so many educators at OTRK12 and GAFE Summit finding their community and learning together!

Brenda Sherry is an education leader from UGDSB.

She shares her learning here:

Presentations, workshops and publications
On Twitter @brendasherry
www.diigo.com/user/bsherry
http://delicious.com/bsherry
http://www.slideshare.net/bsherry
www.tech2learn.wikispaces.com

 

Day 14: Words That Resonate – Inspiration from Google Summit 2014

Created and shared by Bea Meglio

Bea’s Piktochart can be viewed here: https://magic.piktochart.com/output/1671747-words-that-resonate

Screen shots of the graphic can be viewed below.

Please take the time to comment. Do you agree? Start the conversation!

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Bea Meglio, with over 25 years of classroom experience, is a passionate advocate for empowering teachers and students to always strive to reach their potential. Currently as an Education Officer with e-Learning Ontario, she works towards supporting digital opportunities for all learners.

Follow Bea on Twitter: @megliomedia

Day 12: Supporting Educators and Promoting New and Improved Learning for Our Students

Written and shared by Deborah McCallum

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately about what learning is going to look like for our students in the future, and how education needs to change, to meet the needs of society. There are great leaders and movements starting up in Ontario that are helping to support educators and promote new and improved learning for our students.

Indeed, I believe that these new movements need to include embracing eLearning and blended learning environments as frameworks and catalysts for facilitating and activating successful learning for our students.

Today’s education system is outdated in many ways. Structures and institutions are built upon values from the Industrial era. Our students are no longer growing up in this era. There are new opportunities to learn, and learning can look different in different communities and families, cultures. Society has changed in many ways. As Steven Hurley stated in his opening speech at the On The Rise Conference (OTRK12) – desks may be organized in groups, but alas, they are still the same desks!

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We have new technologies that have permeated the rest of our world, our economies are changing rapidly, and job security and stability will not mean the same things for our children as they did for our parents generations.  Further, due to the rapidly changing society of technology, there will be different futures emerging for our students in terms of what jobs will be available. We have opportunities now for students to engage in a variety of learning experiences and a variety of literacies that we can promote to help them navigate uncertainty and follow their passions – literally right at our finger tips! Indeed, it is a very exciting time.

What do students need to succeed?

As I consider what it is that our students will need to succeed in their futures, I always come back to ‘Higher Order Thinking Skills’.  Without a doubt, these are the skills that future generations need to count on to succeed in any job, career, or learning environment.

Knowledge construction, metacognitive elements of learning, reflection, critical thinking, flexible decision making, imagination and creativity are just some of the skills that will be necessary.

Technology has come so far that it is so intuitive for anyone to use, but, the higher order thinking skills still need to be in place to make the most out of these learning opportunities and technologies. eLearning and blended learning environments will continue to grow, and therefore, we need to consider how to apply higher order thinking skills to the eLearning environment.

eLearning & Blended Learning

I had the amazing opportunity to be a part of a workshop at ORTK12 where we co-created an iBook on eLearning. What a brilliant idea to bring together educators to help describe this as something beautiful that can be presented to parents, teachers, students, administrators to understand these new virtual learning spaces that we can create for our students.

I look forward to these new spaces and places for learning, and more importantly learning how to effectively integrate the higher order thinking skills into these new paradigms of learning!

Deborah McCallum

Educator and Learner investigating the intersection between Knowledge Building, Indigenous perspectives, Edtech, Digital Citizenship & New Pedagogies for the 21st Century. Desire2Learn Instructor for AQ & OntarioLearn Highered; Teacher-Librarian Specialist; Science & Technology; Counselling Pychology, GD.

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“Being an independent practitioner is inconsistent with professional practice.”

Brandon Grasley's Blog

wall.jpg by frenchbyte on MorgueFile Don’t go it alone. Image from frenchbyte via MorgueFile

The title quote is from Catherine Montreuil, Director of Education for Bruce-Grey Catholic District School Board. She said this during her keynote presentation at On The Rise K-12: Enhancing Digital Learning on April 2, 2014.

This has really stayed with me. I’ve thought before about the moral imperative I believe teachers have to use technology in their teaching, and to be a reflective practitioner. I’ve always thought it a basic requirement to keep up-to-date with our best thinking around instructional strategies and assessment approaches.

But I’m not sure I’ve ever really thought about it quite they way she put it: that it’s actually unprofessional to be disconnected.

I believe you can connect in any way you like. Connecting with others in your school is a good first step, but the insular nature of schools can prevent you from seeing…

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Celebrating Ontario Education Bloggers

Here are a few new posts written by Ontario Educators over the past few days.  Let’s support our bloggers who are making their thinking visible, reflecting on their learning and sharing with others.  Continue the conversation by providing feedback in the comments.

 

Deborah McCallum:

http://bigideasineducation.wordpress.com/2014/03/25/it-is-not-about-the-technology-it-is-about-what-we-do-with-it/

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Paul McGuire:

http://paulmcguire1.wordpress.com/

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Lorraine Boulos

http://raine6.blogspot.ca/

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#OSSEMOOC: March 25, 2014

Join us at 8:00 p.m. (EDT) on March 25 to discuss the future of teaching and learning in Ontario (see content details below).

Add it to your Google Calendar:

Join us here for a live event:

https://ca-sas.bbcollab.com/m.jnlp?sid=2014006&password=M.27C7823B7138BA538AD6CE81717AAE  (It helps to start connecting just after 7:30 p.m. EDT so we have time to troubleshoot)