CCK11 – Blowing in the wind?

19 01 2011

Photo of a Jericho Rosehttp://www.flickr.com/photos/21173961@N07/3041270105/

I must admit that I do share other CCK11ers anxieties about being overwhelmed with information on this course and how to find a way through it. This can partly be solved by trying to establish some clear objectives for myself – but surely that is only part of this learning process. I have started to wander how the pedagogy of this kind of course works in practice. In my previous post I commented on the fact that I felt fairly secure in my understanding of Constructivism – where the tutor takes on the role of the guide on the side, rather than the sage on the stage. I’m sure this is probably true of Connectivist approaches too.

At the moment I feel a little like a Jericho Rose – alone in a vast wilderness being bowled along rather aimlessly in hope of finding a drop of water to hopefully sprout a few roots and flourish – if only momentarily or periodically 🙂 In the zillions of blog posts, twitter feeds and other content generated on this course not only is there the question of how do we keep up with it all as reflected on by Tracey Parish, a fellow CCKer, in her blog, but how do we, as learners, begin to find content that is relevant, useful, challenging, new… What role does the tutor have to play in supporting the learner to find that needle in the haystack?

I’m also struck by a thought that a connectivist approach to learning may be better suited to Adult learners, who can cope with chaos, who have some confidence in what they need to learn and have some idea of where to begin. What about those learners who need much more scaffolding, who lack confidence in their own ability – those that might easily be lost along the way? After all education has quite a reputation of losing so many of its learners.

Again, these are just some initial thoughts that have been sparked off so far by my admittedly very limited reading!

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8 responses

19 01 2011
Jaap

Hallo,
reflections is a nice title for a blog.
Like you I have questions on Connectivism. Is C. useful in schools is one of my main questions, inhttp://connectiv.wordpress.com/2011/01/19/connectivism-and-assessment/ I try to find more questions.
This remark on C. being an adult way of learning is biting, I like to think about that further.
regards Jaap Bosman

19 01 2011
ruthsexstone

Hi,
Thank you for your comments. In terms of Connectivism being an ‘adult’ way of learning, I was thinking in terms of the fact that adults often make a conscious decision to learn something new, they often have some framework that are working in regarding knowing what they want to, or need to achieve. Children (and more so with younger children) don’t have this foresight and insight to their learning needs. Does that make any sense?!

19 01 2011
Jaap

Hallo,
I agree on adults being more conscious on their goals for learning (sometimes) than little children. Maybe it is not a duality, a yes or no difference, but a gradual one. I remember little girls all day trying to stand on her hands, I think we can call these girls conscious on their goals.
is the difference we discus formal/informal learning?
regards Jaap

19 01 2011
informal learning « connectiv

[…] reply on https://ruthsexstone.wordpress.com/2011/01/19/blowing-in-the-wind/#comment-6 I agree on adults being more conscious on their goals for learning (sometimes) than little […]

19 01 2011
Simon

Good question, Ruth, about whether Connectivism is better suited to adults. I like Jaap’s notion that there may be a change, in emphasis at least, over time from one kind of learning to another. Or even within certain stages of development the change in method perhaps corresponds to the level of complexity of the topic or behavior.

There’s also the question of what the learning is for … when it comes to action, there’s ‘knowledge’ (what Stephen Downes said is “I can’t unthink it”), then there’s literacy (I know how to do it), then there’s fluency (I know how to do it, when, with what, and with whom).

This is going to be a fun and mind-expanding few weeks!

20 01 2011
ruthsexstone

Yes, I agree there is likely to be changes in approaches with the level and maturity of the learner’s ability to learn. I do like your descriptions for knowledge, literacy and fluency!

Mind expanding is putting it mildly. My mind is about to blow!!
Thanks for your comments.

21 01 2011
Keith Hamon

Ruth, I’m not at all sure that Connectivism is better suited for adults. Connectivism is posited by George and Stephen as a theory of how people learn. Such a theory may suggest certain practices, such as MOOCs, and some practices may be better suited for adults than for children, but even considered this way, I’m not sure that Connectivist practices are better suited to adults. In a very real way, YouTube is one large MOOC, and kids around the world are learning from it, through it, with it everyday. They do not seem to experience the disorientation or angst that many of the adult learners have expressed about the last few MOOCs I’ve participated in with George Siemens. Rather, kids on YouTube do exactly what Dave Cormier recommends in his YouTube video about MOOCs: orient, declare, network, cluster, and focus. George suggested similar strategies in Wednesday’s discussion.

23 01 2011
Today’s Links » Collaborative Understandings

[…] order to the detriment of creativity) Apostolos K., 1138 – rEflections, January 20, 2011 [Link] […]

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