Parts 1 & 2 v.good. I like the writing style. vs Reflection seems a bit of a rant (My wife, 2010, this afternoon)
Me rant! Whenever?
This is the most tender exchange my wife and I have had in two years. She lives in another room in the house, rarely to leave, where at great expense to the pharmaceutical community she turns interviews with medical experts (in French and English) into multipage, overly quoted, qualitative reports which make an OU ECA look like a kindergarten doodle.
(A decade into this she is a better pharmacist and GP than our local ... pharmacist or GP. She has vetted and reviewed everything well ahead of it being issued. Which may explain why I have yet to die from asthma. I'm always pumped up with the latest best thing(s)
In an hour I'm poolside coaching Britian's future Olympian swimmers for the next few hours (think Rio in 2016 and beyond, some of them have only just turned 9).
I have a mindmap - hideous term, hateful concept, but when I've done one for a TMA and stuck to it the (bleep, bleep, bleep) things seem to provide structure for my unstructured way of thinking.
800 words of reflection.
Could I say it four ?
'Been there, done that?'
or a few more ...
'Been there, done that, enjoyed the learning journey, up for more.'
Not really worth 20% of the marks.
Meanwhile an eventful day in other ways, prioritise as you see fit:
A statue of Tom Paine was revealed in Lewes (where we live). It is July 4th. He had something to do with the 'Rights of Man.' (Or the rights of one man, him ...) as he was pissing off everyone in Sussex when he jumped ship to the Americas.
I found four baby guinea-pigs in the hutch that has been my responsibility to clean out for the last decade. Daughter just 14 couldn't give a monkeys, though 'til two years ago she adored them. I have called them: 'E,' 'C,' & 'A,' and 'H807.' As the children are finally beyond naming them. Though my son, now 12, did call them 'bite-sized.' Our dog, who has come to replace the G-Ps in our affections, is tender ... she was introduced to guinea-pigs as puppy and just about understands that they are neither small tennis balls or food. We have had some wonderful adventures with out pigs these last ... 12 years.
We haven't had rain for 17 years (or is that days, or weeks) so I felt I had to water the garden. This is having had rain from October 13th 2009 to March 11th without a break).
The papers are declaring it the worst lack of rain in the the first six months of a year since ... well, since the last time this happened in 1992, 1998 and 1976. I have been attempting to syphon water out of the bath into the garden as I did in 1976 age 13 ... and face the same problem. Gagging as the stuff reaches my mouth and finding the lip over the windowsill is impossible to overcome. Do I buy a pump?
My brain is yours for £ and $.
Oh, and a nine year old headache from my late father's estate that suggests I may be taken to court in France. The joke is the letter was sent by recorded delivery that requires a signature is unintelligible to our Postie so he just put it through our letter box. My wife suggests we could (and should) ignore it. Why when I write to France I do so in French ... while the French when they write to English speaking countries do so ... in French?
Not for now
800 words is probably harder to write than 2,000.
And what is reflection anyhow?
Not a rant, not 'stream of consciouness.'
A grovel for marks.
But no one reads these things anyway.
Lurkers please say 'Hi'.
I'm trying to establish which is the better tool for collecting notes, quotes, thoughts & ideas & issues for potential use in forums or assignments.
Short of notes on a filed sheet of paper in a pad do either the OU Blog environment or the OU MyStuff 'information collator' offer something more versatile?
Whilst I can still get away with typing off the top of my head into a blog, this will not do when responding to messages or in a forum.
Sitting back, taking on board what is being discussed, doing my research then reflecting long & hard on a response will be a more productive way froward. I've taken some hints from the OU.
Personal entries in my decade old blog must also be forever locked.
Or removed. Having trawled through this 1.5 million word nonsense removing or changing names, there are still those who occasionally pop up in my life with an amused remark about the detail of their antics ten or twenty years ago. Much of this blog are transcripts & extended reviews & reminiscences of the 70s & 80s.
'Exposure' became my creed in 2001.
'Discretion' will be my approach from now on ... as it is so easy to google a person's name and find out all kinds of things that they may not want to know, that are blag & bluff in any case and could be detrimental to their career hopes (let alone their personal relationships).
Meanwhile, in a time consuming effort that needs to be addressed my sixth draft of the TMA01 is rocking back and forth between 1500 & 2350 words. I may just sit it like an exam and see if I can contain my ideas that way, addressing each in turn a set of points, six at most, that I feel need to be made
Oh to feel like a teen sitting exams again
As a child my late father labelled me as making too many 'value judgments.' It may have stuck. He was equally emphatic about the spelling of judgment, and the correct use of apostrophes.
This tendency to have an emotional response over the objective could compromise how I judge the work of others.
Being aware of this ought to help me to form opinions based on facts.
having some understanding of child psychology I also know that labels stick.
'Money burns a hole in your pocket' I was told and so I became this person ... or I had confirmation of who I was.
All this I am trying to change.
Tangentially to all of this, eight months of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy that was first mooted in 2005, is gradually adjusting my thinking and responses. My habit is to speak first, then think later. The same applies to what I write, particularly in a blog, an environment in which I have written, as I please, when I please and how I please for a decade. CBT ought to be turning off the negative, making me less prone to lash out; so far, so good. Where I am conscious I still fail is the willingness to agree with everyone & say 'yes' to everything in order to please. Later I begin to regret the view I had taken or the decision I had taken. Too phrases I need to use often are, 'let me give that some thought ...' or 'that's interesting, let me get back to you ...'
I know that there are many kinds and forms of blog.
As 'entities' I wonder even if a 'blog' is a suitable term where this space has many different uses & expectations imposed on it. Online Journal, E.Text book, e.notes ... or the term I used, even registering the domain name in 2000 'The Contents of my Brain' or 'TCMB.' i.e. in goes everything, a decade ago with no readily available function to 'expose' all or to 'share' with a define audience or readership.
Where in lies the next issue. If a blog, like a log or a journal or a diary is written for and by one author then by its nature it is likely to be more honest if kept locked and private. As I know, a blog, like a diary, becomes a very different thing once it is published or in the case of the Internet, 'out there.' Think of Anais Nin and her Journals.
Blogs are not what they used to be.
In 1998 those who blogged might have been shipwrecked travellers on a small island - it didn't take long to suss each other out. Some wrote for the sake of it, others had something to say ... one or two were innovators, & creatives, HTML wizards who constantly played with the possible and what was then impossible.
Mummy has come along and made us put our toys away
Many would so this depth of 'reflection' is counter-productive. Others argued that a degree of 'exposure' is required in order to establish connectivity with like minds & the curious.
The learning curve is shown as a series of steps during which time a student initially struggles with concepts and new knowledge, gets to grips with it then plateaus out. After a period the learning curve is met again ... and so on.
In my experience, this returning to academic study in an entirely online experience is less like climbing a steep curve, than jumping into a slide or water flume. The ride has thus far been fast & exhilarating. I have hit a necessary plateau. Or to continue the analogy I have come in with a 'splash.' (At least there is water in this imaginary swimming pool).
Only now am I taking stock, only now am I looking at the rucksack of course materials I have left at the top of the steps. So having shot along in a fast gear I am now going back to the beginning and will revist everything at a somewhat slower pace. I want to play with some of the OU tools & spaces. I want to print off the resources, even buy a book (Rogers' Diffusion in Innovations.). But will this stop me writing off the top of my head? I doubt it, at least not in a blog.
For me a blog has always been about doing exactly this. Where I place it and how I give it 'access' is another matter. To lock, or unlock. To leave ajar with the OU Code on a Post-it note under the door-mat. And how to tag it? My potentially naive experiment with tagging is to 'tag' everything on the basis that I won't know if it is reference-able or drivel until I look over it again i the weeks to come.
There are I believe tools that work better at doing this? Not jsut notes on scraps of paper, but ... a more cohesive & meaningful way to gather your thoughts?
When it's an OU blog.
Admitedly I have a privacy button down there, but the temptation is to hit the 'exposure' button and little the whole world read this drivel (they don't). They got their own stuff to write.
For me a blog requires 'exposure,' it requires honesty ... anything goes. 'The contents of my brian.;
None of these diaries can be this. One might be private, another to be shared with OU students the third open to the world. Three levels of exposure, yet each is from a point of view.
I am on campus, if only a virtual one.
'It seems to me that I follow only the most accessible thread. Three or four threads may be agitated, like telegraph wires, at the same time, and if I were to tap them all I would reveal such a mixture of innocence and duplicity, generosity and calculation, fear and courage.'
(Henry & June, Journals, July 1932 Anais Nin)
For the umpteenth time as several hooks snag I don't know whether to blog in one space or several. The compromise will be to keep this for and about the OU. Therefore 'e.learning & innovation,' even 'innovations in e.learning.'
The problem Anais Nin had related to the 'threads' in her life, her various interests that broadly split between her love life, her efforts to become a published writer of fiction & what the journals gradually become first to her and then to the people (and fans) who read them.
My response has been, having stared a blog, that mimicked a diary and was simply an 'online journal' to split by purpose, by content (the the degree of exposure I was prepared to make/the adult nature of the material) and even by design. Things quickly got in a muddle & I returned to the single blog model, only to find I could not please all, or many (or even any but a handful) of the readers. By which time it had ceased to be a diary, or even an online journal.
I will persevere with WordPress where the old blog will be migrated. This could take some time. 8,000 hours if I go entry by entry. Oops. Maybe not them. I can be more selective than that. The intention will be to use current blogging tools to find & establish threads of ideas, topics, stories, people & events. To what end though?
Then there'll be a blog for teaching & coaching swimming aimed only at fellow teachers & coaches - so not on how to swim, or how to swim faster ... just how to teach or coach people to swim and then to swim faster.
There is relevance to this in relation to 'innovations in e.learning.
What is most likely to produce an innovation? By being prescriptive, or saying 'anything goes?' Or a bit of both. Somehow.
Or am I talking here about inventiveness & creativity?
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