Sunday, June 20, 2010

Fitting the Pieces Together

The connectivism theory helped me understand my learning process.  One the most common way is the online searching.  People search about related topics.  Learning about these theories guide me to perform in a better way as a teacher.

Understanding learning theories, provides me the opportunity to observe and compare each of them as a learner and as a teacher.  In the past I had the opportunity to learn about some of the theories.  In this class, I have explore them in a deeper level.  Together with some workshops, I have a better understanding of Social Learning and Connectivism.  The educational system that I work with is starting to give emphasis to Social Learning.  As I plan for my daily lessons, I ask myself what activities can I provide to satisfy the different learning styles.  Establishing effective objectives will help my students have a better understanding about the presented topic.  I use Essential Questions to guide my students to establish connections in class.  Reviewing each theory helps me analyze each student learning style.
The learning process describes what happens during the learning process.  Each theory defines particular characteristics of learning. In psychology and education, learning is commonly defined as a process that brings together cognitive, emotional, and environmental influences and experiences for acquiring, enhancing, or making changes in one's knowledge, skills, values, and world views (Illeris, 2000; Ormorod, 1995).  In my learning process, Connectivism plans an important role.  The use of the Internet, facilitales connections made during a research.  One of the examples studied in class, was about Bobby and the research about restauring a Mustang Car 1967.  I do the same thing, when I want to learn about an specific topic.  One example, is when I want to purchase a technological equipment, I read the features and reviews of the product.  I search for videos about the product and the feedback of customers.  Sometimes, I am able to find blogs, related to these products.  Many persons, do this on a daily basis without knowing that they are learning in the process.  Using strategies we can model and guide our students to learn through connectivism.
The use of technology is part of my daily life.  We need to considerate that technology works for us and not us for technology.  We need to be careful, that we don’t become totally dependant of these tools.  These days people depend on their cell phones, if they loose it by accident; they are lost.  They don’t know phone numbers of their friends or relatives.  In the past we use to memorize phone numbers or keep a phone numbers notebook.   Technology has to be part of our Instructional Design.  
Today many information could be retrieve with a click or an Enter of our devices.  Is not only the computer, it includes many other devices as mobiles, palms, and others.  The cell phone has taken importance with the use of Internet.  Many pads have become popular, thanks to the access of the Internet.  One of the newest technology is the TV with Wi-Fi access.  This tool will provide Internet access from the TV for easy access of movies and social networking.  One of the biggest challenges these days is to be updated with the new technologies.  Our challenge is to be able to share these new technologies into the teaching style.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


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  • How has your network changed the way you learn?

 A couple weeks ago, I was sharing with my kids my memories about the way we had to research to complete our homework in elementary school. I don't want you to think that I'm very old, I'm just talking about the life in the 70's and 80's.  We have experienced big changes during the last years.  Most of our students can't visualize that in the past there was no Internet.  Technology plays an important place in our learning process.  As a kid, I had to search in old encyclopedias.  A was sharing with my kids, how we had to visit some neighbors to borrow search for information in their encyclopedias to complete our assignments.  We were searching for different versions of encyclopedia and old magazines for information.  My experience as a child, allows me the opportunity to understand the technological transition.  Technology has become and important tool in my learning.  The advantage of finding the information immediately and updated has facilitate my learning experience.  One important detail, is the need to evaluate the resources we research from.

  • Which digital tools best facilitate learning for you?

The integration of computers in our life continues to grow in high speed for many persons.  Most of it, includes the use of the Internet.  It is interesting to see how we depend on the Internet for many daily activities.  The Internet, has become part of our lives.  I see the computer as a powerful tool.  It allows me learning and working tools.  We need to learn to make the best use of these tools.  Humans are managers of these powerful tools for learning.

  • How do you gain new knowledge when you have questions?

Technology has facilitated the exchange of information.  The frequent research for answers to our questions, has change the way we find answers and solve problems.  The reading process in fundamental.  As a teacher reading is fundamental in my classroom and I always include it in my plans.  I use this tool to troubleshoot technology issues.  Frequent research takes me from a website to another.  Blogs provides us with connections and experiences of other learners that are searching for answers in similar topics.  I frequently use blogs and videos on youtube.  YouTube provides many videos of tutorials of how to do many things.

  • In what ways does your personal learning network support or refute the central tenets of connectivism?

Today the majority of the people have to connect knowledge with prior ideas.  The use of these technological tools help to provide information.  A good example, is the use of cellphones on the youth.  As educators, we need to find and facilitate connections for the effective use of cellphones in education.  There are many tools we can mention.  The most important fact is how we learn and how we cam use technology to enrich our learning experience.