Reflections on Widen your classroom with blogs

null The fours week blogging course has come to an end, and it’s time to reflect.
It has been an intensive four weeks and I’ve met a lot of friendly and very motivated people.

They have overcome problems and persevered to create their own space in the internet. It is easy  to forget how daunting that can.

And so I applaud all of you from the course who have taken the first step.

Of course, not everyone managed to create a blog and some dropped out of sight (site!). But this too is a natural phenomenon and not to be scoffed at or scolded. Perhaps the time wasn’t right, or perhaps a second start will be needed.
For those of you who couldn’t or didn’t carry on for whatever reason, I thank you for joining the course anyway and hope that you have been able to take with you something of it for a later point in time.

For those of you who have questioned whether using blogs for teaching and learning purposes (I stress the learning part!) is worth the time involved, I can assure you that this is a good question and worth exploring further.  What added value will a blog give your learners? The WOW effect? A new look for old methods?  Or can it induce a new kind of methodology, or simply an addition outside the classroom that wasn’t possible before?

I’m sure there will be those of you blogging about that as well, and I look forward to reading your discoveries and conclusions for in everything I teach I make sure that I am learning.

The changes in technology are continueous. As Jenny stated in the live session, you may become used to a certain tool and then suddenly find it gone or changed and have to set out to find another one. But it is nothing to be afraid of.  A teacher who cannot learn cannot truely teach.

I too have plodded on and tried this and that, asked for help, led the way and let others lead me, and so I am glad to have you join me on this journey as readers, writers, teachers, and acquaintances, making the world wide web a little smaller and bit more friendly.

2009 in a Sentence


The never-ending path of life

Well, this year is almost over. The days are getting shorter in my part of the world and the fields are covered in white.  It’s a festive time, a time when people long for light in their lives and enjoy the celebrations which bring their friends and family closer.

Since the year is coming to an end, I’d like to invite you to share something about your year before we move on to 2010. All variations are also kindly welcome.

Just post your sentence as a comment and on Sunday they will be released for all to read.

Here is mine:

Overcome illness  and rejoined family have helped me to focus and redefine my priorities, making time for the little joys in life and appreciating what is often taken for granted.

I am glad to say that my mother-in-law is now cancer-free and my darling son has come back from a year abroad a young man.

Thanks, Kevin, for bringing so many people together through A Day in a Sentence!

reflections on evo 08

Time really flies when you are busy and so my reflections on the 08 smielt session is much later than the actual end.

I certainly learned a lot about moderating, as it was my first time doing it, and I would definitely do it again.  The role of moderator isn’t the same as of instructor, so I was confronted with people who had more experience in some areas than I did. This meant taking a guiding role rather than an authoritative role. The participants all had their experiences to share and so the profit was global and immense. This makes me think about the role of the teacher in the classroom. How much authority is necessary? How can we as educators include our pupils (YL) or students in the decision-making process of what they learn and how they learn it?

And, of course, there was the discovery of different tools and how they can be used. Twitter was especially interesting with quite a bit of scepticism, and at the same time enthusiasm. Like with blogging, I was reluctant to see any use for it, but in the meanwhile I enjoy using it and even keep up private contact through Twitter.

Flickr was another tool that was much discussed, with good ideas flying about. Much sharing and enthusiasm.

The end was Charles’ Hipbone game. Unfortunately, the enthusiasm seemed to taper out before the end of the game. Nevertheless, it was a highly enjoyable experience and a great brain-wracker.

Now a final thank you to all who contributed to the session! It’s been wonderful following your thoughts on your blogs and I hope to keep up the discussions 🙂