Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Internet Sea of Serendipity

 I have recently been thinking a lot about online and hybrid teaching, and how the internet has changed the world and our access to every aspect of teaching and learning.  Really, what a thing to witness and be a part of!  I gave a presentation last week at the NW eLearn conference about teaching a MOOC, and talked about how teaching a course for the pleasure of teaching it (as opposed to a graded course as part of a school curriculum) is so joyful; as MOOC facilitator Maria Andersen has commented, "A more pure form of learning."  

Part of my presentation was about "What happens when the school bus stops, and you don't get on?" Being part of the MOOC adventure has stirred in my thoughts my experiences as a homeschool mom, when we decided to school our two adopted kids so that we could bond with them better, and in the process were unleashed to become "everyday experience" lifelong learners. 

Last weekend I visited my family in Portland.  My sister has several of my mom's fabric art quilts on her wall, and one of them is called "The Ocean's Edge."  I stared at it and thought about how important it is for educators to develop a personal and meaningful relationship with the  internet. Find what you need, be open to discoveries you didn't expect, and become part of some communities that will nourish you.
It's all about navigating that sea, isn't it?

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