Connectivism

Mind Map. More to come. It’s infinite.

Since I grew up with my conservative and traditionalist auntie, my “peers” and “best friends” were her teachers in school. I follow them around while they teach and mimics their teaching when I play with the same age group. 

Joyce L. Epstein, in a 1995 article and a 2001 book titled School, Family, and Community Partnerships, argued that school, family, and community are important “spheres of influence” on children’s development and that a child’s educational development is enhanced when these three environments work collaboratively toward shared goals. Epstein encouraged schools to create greater “overlap” between the school, home, and community through the implementation of activities across six types of involvement: parenting, communication, volunteering, learning at home, decision-making, and collaboration with the community. By implementing activities across all six types of involvement, educators can help improve student achievement and experiences in school.

It’s no wonder that I ended up being a teacher too. In my network, I have surrounded myself with professionals who inspired me to build my teacher capacity. I studied how they prepare for their lessons, use that heavy-duty typewriter, the manila chart papers, loads of it, and tapes them on their chalkboard, and starts memorizing the sequence of their “scripted lesson.” I enjoyed seeing the actions before the curtain calls.

As a generation x member, my exposure to the era gave way to my eclectic collection of music from the ’60s – Beach Boys, Eddie Floyd, The Spencer Davis Group, shifting to the ‘70s Fleetwood Mac and singing with Joni Mitchell’s classic Both Sides Now. I find learning to be easier and my memory sharper when I associate the songs I’m learning with the lessons I’m reviewing at home.  I began getting used to multi tasking, keeping myself on task with studies with the radio as my companion. 

The influence of  adults in my adolescence prompted me to engage in books that some of my batch would not read on a daily basis – Reader’s Digest, and novels including Higgin’s 1976 novel The Storm Warning. It was fascinating to discover historical events beyond your years and travel through time in books. My teachers would share what they’re reading in our local magazines and those thick hardbound books they use for their lessons, with Benjamin Bloom’s classification of learning, Bloom’s Taxonomy included. 

Significant was the role of peers and professors during college to my decision-making on choosing the network I chose to navigate and grow in, in the ‘80s. Still heavily invested in music, specifically voice,  I worked closely with my choir director making my circle of adult friendships wider. During this time, the call for learning technology became the “thing” since we have to record our voices and use the computer to do digital researches. I was already in my junior college and internship has begun. I carry with me those literally and figuratively heavy duty tape recorders while I study songs in between learning instructional strategies in class. 

Teaching in the ‘90s requires us to use that, again, heavy, and really heavy with a 2,000 degree lamp over-head projectors to and from another classroom. Not to mention you have to pull in the giant television from the library. When we needed to hand out materials, we needed to ask for our librarian to do copying since the mimmeographing machine is locked in the Principal’s office. 

During the 1990’s teaching and learning were transformed by the increasing power of multimedia computers, broadband networks and significant improvements in design and delivery of pedagogical content via electronic means.The industry went from CBT ( Computer-based Training ) and rudimentary synchronous learning applications to sophisticated e-Learning platforms that combined the best of both(Dunning, et. al. 2006). 

Moving to the United States made me reunite with the demands of technology in teaching, with this being part of our framework for teaching. As an educator, we are expected to infuse technology to launch our lessons and keep the students engage in the activities. This was a challenge, since the transition from my hometown to where I am now , insist on learning the labyrinth of media use. I had to go through a self selected technology trainings aside from the workshop the county has mandated for us to attend. There was a disconnect at some point, since there were limitations to the materials back home compared to the materials I was given. 

Like a trouper that I am, I immersed myself with understanding how the system works. Linking my traditional ways of teaching to the new platform of educating children, I equipped myself with the “basic” skills of remote learning. My knowledge of it is a far cry from the tech gurus’ in the building, but I am learning. 

The necessities of our knowledge-based economy coupled with the exponential pace of change require us to constantly absorb new knowledge in order to remain competitive. Online learning provides a practical, cost-effective foundation for lifelong learning that is reshaping our notions of when and how we learn. ―Learning on demand‖ provides education tailored to solve an immediate and specific need for learning that is time sensitive. Often used to refresh what one has learned or as a reference tool, instant access to learning has become both convenient and cost effective, allowing the student to minimize time away from work while simultaneously enhancing the skills, knowledge, and abilities required to adapt to the exigencies of our knowledge-based society(Dunning, et. al. 2006). 

Reference 

Epstein, Joyce L. 1995. “School/Family/Community Partnerships: Caring for the Children We Share.” Phi Delta Kappan 76:701–712.

Sheldon, Steven B.2021. Parental Involvement in Education.StateUniversity.comh Retrieved from ttps://education.stateuniversity.com/pages/2309/Parental-Involvement-in-Education.html#ixzz6sHqwFDGy

Dunning, J. Batthacharya, S. Daniels, D. & Dunning, K. 2006.Virtual Learning World as a Bridge to Arts and Humanities and Science and Technology.Forum on Public Policy. Introduction.p.1

Laureate Education (Producer). (n.d.). Connectivism [Video file]. Baltimore, MD: Author.

Published by Anj delaPena

Mother.Teacher.Musician. In that order.

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