This has been an interesting week. Working on mapping a course, playing around with new technology, getting a finished product I really liked and not having it export as a compatible file was frustrating to say the least. Not sure if it was a MAC thing or dumbness on my part, but I just don’t have the time to blow on figuring it out. So I switched to another program, redid the map and hope it is readable when I post this.
The readings this week were excellent fodder for thought on my commute to and from work. Thinking of this boom of virtual classrooms which have emerged over the last few years, and Bonk’s statement about most online educators not being certified or degreed gave me great concern for the learner. Who assures that THEY get what is a high quality learning experience? Remembering some of our earlier discussions where some of my classmates first e-learning experiences were anything but stellar tells me we have a long way to go see to it that this learning becomes and remains learner centered.
My map is here:
I’m in the thick of week two. I’ve begun another course to complete this journey and I’m feeling a bit overwhelmed right at this moment. To top it off, my daughter took a nasty hit to the nose at softball this week and ended up with a broken nose. Breathe, I keep saying, breathe! I can do this. She’s gonna be just fine because she’s one tough cookie.
So it’s interesting this week that the focus is on blogging, introspection if you will. I’m struggling with trying to figure out how to set up Word Press to handle Multiple pages instead of one long running journal, I can’t figure out the way to do the intro page for me, I am desperately in need of sleep and I think things will look better later. But the set-back early in the week has put me behind, so I’ll go back to it over the weekend with a fresh mind and perspective.
About Blogging as an Assessment Tool, which was this week’s module, I was intrigued with the idea of using blogs in the classroom for a whole range of purposes, from sharing resources to allowing the students to reflect on what they learned throughout the week by being “scribe” for the day. Mena Trott’s video, Mena Trott on Blogs was a poignant conversation on what happens when one opens them self up to the world of blogging. Mena actually phased out one of her blogs because of the nasty feedback she received about one of her posts. This raised questions about monitoring the classroom blog for unsavory behaviors and setting carefully structured uses for blogs. This gives me much to think about as I look forward to the realities of a more active online presence.
A Post Script: After reading several other comments in the discussion board in class, I realize I am not the only one with the Word Press page issue. What I want to do doesn’t exist, at least not in the free version. Grr. Now off to bed.
This blog is a continued reflection of the courses I am taking as I progress on this path toward certification in E-Learning and Online Teaching.
Since this is a course about assessment, I am keenly aware that while we are learning about best practices for grading procedures, performance- based assessment, summative and formative feedback methods as well as a host of other useful evaluative tools, I am also being assessed and evaluated every step of the way. What I say, how often I reply, the questions I ask, the manner in which I give feedback, all are evaluated in order to make me a better instructor.
The Wiki as Online Assessment Tool this first week was taught using this activity , the Assessment of Student Learning in the Online Classroom. I believe the instructors intent was to see how well we could a) collaborate with another student to complete a task such as an interview, and b) to see how well we understood the guidelines on online etiquette also know as netiquette. Our intros were fun to do because of the use of perspective. Even tough we told a story of who we were to another, it was then told through their voice to the class. Some things became interesting in translation. This could prove to be a fun course after all.