Friday, December 27, 2013

(e)Learning by (e)doing...

I am having so much fun (and learning so much!) in getting ready to facilitate the first year in our eLearning Certificate that starts Jan. 13th. 
What's different about this certificate? Here's a short list of awesome attributes that sets it apart from the rest:
1. Cost.  The whole series of six courses cost less than one course in many other institutions. (No, I'm not exaggerating.) This is not to say it is worth less; it is being provided by an institution that is dedicated to providing quality education at affordable prices.

2. A focus on community college educators. This series allows us to hold discussions, share information and exchange ideas related to our students, who range from often multilingual single working parents who may not have been in school recently, to youth and immigrants working on GEDs. Our students vitally need us, and we want to create online learning pathways that work. This is relevant to K-12 educators as well, as many of our concerns overlap.

3. Hands-on and practical.  Participants will have a chance to learn by doing...and put new tools and ideas to immediate use. Readings will be kept to a minimum; practice activities to a maximum. 

4.  The unique facilitators (myself included!)  The curriculum for our inaugural year has been put together by incredibly dedicated and knowledgable bunch that stops an nothing to explore and learn; take a look at our bios here. I personally like to think that besides my extensive educational experience, my enthusiasm and penchant for creativity and inclusive communities will have a positively fantastic impact on the participants in this certificate, who will each finish with an online course that they have created themselves.

Here's a video to give you a quick look at Course Design and Implementation:

2014....Looking forward to it!

Sunday, December 15, 2013


My thoughts have been focused on connections a lot recently. And the more I think about them, the more I find. I feel that having a Connected Consciousness is going to be more and more crucial for educators. I see it in:

1. Connecting educators.  Our upcoming inaugural offering of a Certificate in eLearning Design and Development was initially created with community/technical educators in mind, but we were encouraged to offer clock hours for K-12 educators as well. We have, and they are signing up. The more I think about it, the more excited I become at how much sense it makes for us to be talking to each other, and how much we could benefit from sharing our experiences. 

2. Connecting elearning to our lives. It is not the "other" learning anymore. It is becoming what we do - even in our ground courses, it plays an important role. It is part of our everyday thinking, learning, and exploring, and we need to mentor our students as well as ourselves to eLearn eVeryday.   At zazzle (love that site!)  I created a poster to display at our school:
3. Connecting ideas. This is such a major force in eLearning - the ability to find inter-relatedness among subjects, specialties, and thoughts.  This is breaking apart our boxes and our thoughts are roaming the web free from many of the previous academic constraints of book bindings, budgets, and preconceived boundaries. Our twitters are intertwining in beautiful mosaics of inspiration and blog posts are creating little explosions of ah-hahs.  We can wander freely and pick a camping spot without worry - every spot is different, every spot has a great view, and they are all free.

eLearn eVeryday.  I think if I make that my 2014 resolution, it will be a great year.