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In 2018 eduToolkit will focus on Innovative Teaching and Learning to redesign learning activities. ICT can help learners collaborate in ways that were not possible before and allows young people to share their views with an audience that is outside their own school environment.Students need to design their communication for a particular audience and have the opportunity to revise their work based on feedback before it is submitted or finalised.

The 21st Century Learning Design for Educators builds on the ITL research methodology providing a collaborative, practice-based process to help educators transform how they design enriching learning activities for their students. Orchestration and design is crucial when Teaching with Technology to enhance the teaching and learning experience and enable students to acquire 21st century skills.

 

Mission statement for 2018:

To develop a classroom practice based on design thinking and change the terminology in line with “Define”, “Ideate” and “Prototype” to promote an e-learning ecology that support innovative teaching and learning

 

 

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We easily fall into the groupwork mode from school and divide tasks between us, but this don’t allow collaborative inquiry and collective responsibilitiy. How could a learning community help participants to become part of a learning community and collaborate with their peers?

In my experience the connections between participants is in a star-network dependent on one central node. The groupwork mode allow members to cluster in hubs-and-spouts, but in an distributed-network. The star-network reduces the probability of a network failure by connecting all of the peripheral nodes to a central node, but this node also allow failure for the network.

 

To be continued…

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During Topic 2: Open Learning – Sharing and Openness I looked at some chapters in Teaching in a Digital Age: Guidelines for Teaching and Learning by Tony Bates (2014). He emphasizes decision-making in our volatile, uncertain, complex and ambiguous world.

 

“Although governments, institutions and learners themselves can do a great deal to ensure success in teaching and learning, in the end the responsibility and to some extent the power to change lies within teachers and instructors themselves. It will be the imagination of teachers inventing new ways of teaching that will eventually result in the kinds of graduates the world will need in the future.” (Bates 2014)

 

My personal interest has been on the affordances of collaborative learning in online environments and I developed a Collaborative Open Online Learning (COOL) course. The course use microcredentials (i.e. open badges) as a way to recognize skills and achievements. Distributed knowledge (instead of a central node in a star network) are stored in Open Educational Resources (OERs), which is blended and re-mixed to student’s local context. My belief is that someone with expert skills can find patterns between and traverse key concepts and knowledge domains (i.e. salient properties of an entity).  He or she can also demonstrate and validate this knowledge in a Community of Practitioners (Brown and Duguid 2002). Notice the focus on knowing-in-practice where practitioners from different contexts learn from each other as they try to address similar real-life problems.

 

An analogy I find helpful is literature circles. They were first implemented in 1982 by Karen Smith, providing a way for students to engage in critical thinking and reflection. Research have found that peer collaboration has a positive effect on student learning and performance as well as improved reading comprehension and content-knowledge (Daniels, 2002).

Compared to a book club a literature circle Includes assessment of fellow group members (i.e. peet-to-peer review) and opportunity to keep track of your own progress though self-assessment. Literature circles offers an alternative to teacher-centered discourse, but it is recommended to agree on checklists or other rubrics to provide structure. Collaborative learning in a digital age allow members to write reflective blog posts and Activity Tracker (which was used in previous iterations of the ONL course).

 

As participants in ONL181 you can probably understand my interest in Open Online Learning. I think we as educators need to focus on assessment and distinction between literacy and fluency!

On the subject of open learning I have used Scalable Learning that is provided for free for individual teachers (here is also experiments with LTI integrations with Canvas LMS)

References:

 

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An explorer attempts to predict the relationship between two points (i.e. regression line). An observer tend to survey from two known points at either end of a fixed baseline (i.e. triangulation). An engineer focus on discerning patterns and regularities in data (i.e. pattern recognition). This involve actively forming our own thoughts through self-exploration and discuss our observations.

 

During our first topic I’ve spent time to rethink the metaphor of a co-facilitator as a Learning Improvement Engineer. In the reading I found “No longer are we just facilitating students so that they can perform (qualification), but we must also ensure that they are being socialised (socialisation) into a ‘way-of-being’ (subjectification) that includes attributes and skills to take risks, to reason critically, to reflect, to be resourceful, and to be autonomous – qualities of lifelong learners – which will allow them to work and live productively in a world of uncertainties” (Kek & Huijser 2015). Looking at Problem-Based Learning for Transformation and Social Reform “facilitators awaken students’ embedded perspectives as well as the values and ideologies located in texts and common practices within their disciplines” (Savin-Baden 2014). The table over Constellations of Problem-Based Learning describes the Form of Facilitation (p. 203) as:

  • Coordinator of knowledge and skills
  • Orchestrator of learning opportunities
  • Enabler of group reflection
  • Decoder of cultures

Investigation: The facilitator provides one important source of scaffolding, but how might technology extend the human facilitator in larger groups?

 

I’m going to take a systematic approach based on a human ecology for learning model (adapted from Bronfenbrenner & Morris, 2006)

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What if digital technologies can support course design and extend opportunities for collaboration, engagement and learning? What if collaborative and open online learning can create an understanding of the value, possibilities and challenges of using digital tools to support teaching and learning?

This year iteration of Open Networked Learning (#ONL181) is about to start! As a previous participant in #ONL172 I’m acting as a co-facilitator that help participants to climb the thresholds of technology and tackle challenges of the course. We are about 150 people in the community with 120 participant in 15 PBL groups from three countries.

The groups will explain, discuss and assess the shared topic and then use the created content in the community to critically reflect on questions concerning eLearning related to their own teaching practice.

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I was recently faced with a situation at work where we noticed that our project stagnated. It was everyone’s task but no one’s responsibility.

What have you accomplished during the course?

I participated in the ONL162 in 2016 as an Open Learner with no PBL-group, which gave me possibility to interact with the course material and reflect on posts from peers. In this iteration of ONL172 the work with peers opened up for hands-on investigation and a shared experience. I was challenged to contribute and take leadership, which also accelerated the learning.

Reflect on your development as a group and the value of the PBL group for your learning?

One key function was for me that we were asked to facilitate during one of our five topics. This changed my participation to an active learner and also created a natural respect to the peer organizing meeting times and structures for how we would share our results

How would you apply what you have learnt in your institutions and life in general?

I have used my participation in ONL172 as metareflection on networked learning. During the first week wanted to explore “Learning in a Networked World”, “Digital Fluency” and “Collaborative Inquiry”. In the Wiktionary metareflection is defined as “the consideration of various different points of view”, which is how I foresee Online Networked Learning. I’m building my own MOOC and writing my master thesis with focus on “Teachers Open Online Learning – for Professional Development”

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During topic 4 we have investigated “Design for online and blended learning” and my focus was on systematic reflection throughout a whole course. I’m in favour of self-reflection and peer review to keep online learners actively engaged. Checklists or trackers can be a form, but I have also seen recorded material or presentations that ask the “viewer” to interact (i.e. Flipped classroom approach). In our reading we looked at constructive alignment (i.e. align teaching and assessment to the outcomes we intend students to learn) and map levels of understanding from the SOLO Taxonomy. The aim is to give the students the skills to integrate aspects and apply them to untaught applications (i.e. extended abstract).

I looked at the tool Scalable-Learning and this is what they write in their manual:

Flipping the classroom is all about getting passive lectures out of the class so that students can engage in active learning activities during class time, which challenges them while they are in the classroom with the teacher to help.

Assumptions:

  1. Your in-class material consist of computer-based presentations with you talking and advancing the presentation.
  2. You want to record your computer screen and audio for your online lectures.
  3. You want to include online self-assessment quizzes and in-class active learning.

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To assess the collaboration among peers I have used a rubric for 21st Century Learning Design (21CLD) from Innovative Teaching and Learning. Did they share responsibility fairly, make substantive decisions together, and create interdependent work products?

In the Activity Rubrics there is a five level checklist on collaboration and during our group work we discussed the diffrence between collaboration and cooperation. I then used the model from the reasearch from Rita Kops presentation to illustrate how the outcome in collaboration we have mutually defined goals, but in cooperation we have personal defined goals.

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Our scenario during the second topic in ONL172, mention the use of technology in a MOOC. One example is to divide the material into modules and add micro-credentials. Open Badges was started by Mozilla Foundation and this is their definition:
“Open Badges are visual tokens of achievement, affiliation, authorization, or other trust relationship sharable across the web. Open Badges represent a more detailed picture than a CV or résumé as they can be presented in ever-changing combinations, creating a constantly evolving picture of a person’s lifelong learning”
IMS Global Learning Consortium write:
“Open Badges are information-rich visual representations of verifiable achievements earned by recipients and are a vital component of the digital credentials ecosystem”
(IMS Global, 2017)
This is my screencast that is the result from my investigations:

We shared out reflection as a padlet:

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As we worked with our first topic in Open Networked Learning (#ONL172) we were asked to reflect on our digital presence and identity as well as our experience of digital consumption, communication, collaboration and creation. In my PBL group one subtopic that we had in FOCUS was “What about digital identity – how does it develop?” and from my own INVESTIGATIONSHARE this text and video in our collaborative space (Padlet):

Maybe Different identities can be categorized into Cultural Generations (i.e. Generation X, Millenials etc.). Another approach is that we create our digital identity through primary socialization early in life in the home and in the peer group we acquire the primary discourse that we use to make sense of the world and interact with others. (Gee, 1989)

Q1:1 Who are you as an individual in the digital age, and what characterizes your journey so far?

Answer: I was an early adopter of digital communication and started my first blog on GeoCities and then SUNET at 15 years old. There was no template and html-files was uploaded with ftp-service to a server. In year 2000 I started my teaching career at an upper secondary school with specialization in ICT and Project Based Learning. Where we were pioneers with students’ digital portfolio. Now in 2017 I’m engaged as a Teacher Ambassador to foster the use of technology in education. Some of my projects involve collaborative problem solving with Minecraft for Education (a form of virtual Lego) and virtual fieldtrips with Skype in the Classroom or Hangouts on Air across the world.

Q1:2 Think about your own digital literacy and identity in your personal and professional life, and how they are linked.

Answer: I have not always used the latest technology since schools have a limited budget, but I’ve focused on the affordance of technology. To me literacy allow you to use digital technology to get the work done, but to fully express yourself you need to develop digital fluency. In social media I’m known as the Networked Teacher (Nätbaserad lärare) in my Swedish Network. Sharing in English and international networking is connected to the NGO eduToolkit.

Q1:3 What ONL might mean for your development and what is your experience from the course so far?

Answer: I’ve facilitated my first MOOC to help in-service teachers from Sweden and Norway to integrate new media and technologies into today’s K-12 learning environments. I’m also writing my masters theses called “Teachers Open Online Learning for Professional Development” and this is why this Open Networked Learning course is very relevant for my own development. My experience is that the structure and scenario initiate collaboration. Then each participant also take responsibility to fill out the Activity Tracker (in a google form that we are allowed to edit during the course). This is part of the instruction: Below you will find sub-fields for each of the 5 topics. Please fill in (briefly) where and how you have been active. It could be for instance your activity in your PBL-group (if you took the lead for a specific topic, if you participated to make the presentation, etc), links to collaborative group work, links to written blog posts and written feedback, discussions in the main forum, participation in webinars etc. Please add links where appropriate. I also find it easier to write a reflective blogpost, since I’m describing work that has already been done during the investigation of the topic.

Q1:4 What readings and discussions have you consulted during this topic?

Answer: I got the idea that digital identity can be categorized into Cultural Generations, but ended up looking on primary socialization. According to Paul Gee, discourses are ways of being in the world that are forms of life which integrate words, acts, values, beliefs, attitudes and social identities as well as gestures, glances, body positions, and clothes. Through primary socialization early in life in the home and in the peer group we acquire the primary discourse that we use to make sense of the world and interact with others [1]. I then thought about how we create our own narrative based on our ontological beliefs and how socializing with people with similar beliefs can create a “Filter Bubble”. At Wikipedia we can read: A filter bubble is a state of intellectual isolation that can result from personalized searches when a website algorithm selectively guesses what information a user would like to see based on information about the user, such as location, past click-behavior and search history. As a result, users become separated from information that disagrees with their viewpoints, effectively isolating them in their own cultural or ideological bubbles.

Going back to Paul Gee’s idea of primary discourse, he also writes that “Filtering” is a process whereby aspects of the language, attitudes, values, and other elements of certain secondary discourses (e.g. dominant ones represented in the world of school and translocal government and business institutions) are filtered into primary discourse (and, thus, the process whereby a literacy can influence home-based practices) [1]. This got me thinking about how our online spaces define our identity, with Blogs,Twitter conversations and hashtags as well as LinkedIn account. I revisited my account on Klout and found it to be quite accurate.

In the article A Digital Identity: Creating Uniqueness in a New Contextual Domain I red: Individuals have often used various methods to express who they are and what they represent. While a digital representation has both positive and negative consequences for a real-life setting, the techniques and features of what has become a digital literacy have allowed individuals to better define the world they live in, as well as how they want to be represented in that world [2]. I’m now left with the question if I “own” and “control” my digital presence and identity…

References:

[1] Gee, J.P. (1989). Literacy, discourse and linguistics: Introduction. Retrieved from http://jamespaulgee.com/pdfs/Literacy%20and%20Linguistics.pdf

[2] A Digital Identity: Creating Uniqueness in a New Contextual Domain. Available from: https://www.researchgate.net/publication/259990379_A_Digital_Identity_Creating_Uniqueness_in_a_New_Contextual_Domain [accessed Oct 11 2017].