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Experiential Learning David Kolb

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I've done a lot of this of late: reading hefty tomes on education. It makes the pragmatism and evidence based practices of Dylan Wiliam all the more important. Here goes for Kolb. There are a few quotes worth citing and no doubt some theories I might, with your asssitance, get my head around. 

Experiential Learning: Experience as the source of learning and development

  • David A. Kolb (1984)
  • New Jersey, USA
  • Prentice Hall PTR

Eight Chapters

  • Intro
  • Towards competence
  • Working knowledge
  • Pertinent jobs

C1. Adaptation and learning - this is the unique human skill

And why something like Covid-19 is a catastrophe and a catalyst for change

‘Learning is no longer ‘for the kids’ but a central lifelong task essential for personal development and career success.

Experiential learning:

  • Internships
  • Field placements
  • Work/Study Assignments
  • Structured exercises
  • Role Play

Gaming simulations (Kolb, 1984)

  • Apprenticeships
  • T Levels
  • Learning Model Cos

Online selling (2021)

E.G. Digital literacy reflection ‘adults’ learning interests are embedded in their personal histories, in their visions of who they are in the world and what they can do and want to do.’ Rita Weathersby (1978, p.19)

NOTE : > For these adults learning methods that combine work and study, theory and practice provide a more productive arena for learning. (Kolb, 1984, p.6)

Tension/Controversy conflict - brings about discussion and learning (p.10)

In and off the moment i.e. living it.

Being detached enough to see this process and context for what it is.

Open atmosphere

Formal models

Vitality and creativity

C2 The Process of Experiential Learning

The central role of that experience plays in the learning process (p.20)

Here-and-now concrete experience - observations and reflection - formation of abstract concepts and generalisations > testing implications

The Lewinian Model (p.21) 

Dewey’s Model more detailed

Knowledge obtained partly by recollection and partly from the information, advice, and warming of those who observed.

Piaget’s model and stages (p.23)

0-2 years concrete/active sensory-motor stage

Feeling, touching, handling, goal-orientated behaviour.

2-6 years - beginning to reflective orientation internalising actions and converting them to images.

7-11 years - logic of classes and relations. The child increases his independence.

12-15 years

Jerome Bruner ‘Toward a Theory of Instruction’ - makes the point that the purpose of education is to stimulate inquiry and skill in the process of knowledge getting, not to memorise a body of knowledge.

Implant new ideas (p.28)

Dispose of or modify old ones

Resistance to new ideas

Bring out examine and test the learner’s belief and themes

Integration and substitution

Wallas (1926)

Four stages:

  1. Incorporation
  2. Incubation
  3. Insight
  4. Verification

Fig.2.4

See this for elements to include in a lesson/sessions

C3 Structural Foundation of the Learning Process

A four-stage cycle: (p.40)

  1. Concrete experience 
  2. Reflective observation
  3. Abstract conceptualisation
  4. Active experimentation

How people do things regardless of it being the best approach.

Overtime, individuals develop unique possibilities - processing structures that the dialectic tensions between the pretension and transformation dimension and consistently resolved in a characteristic fashion.  (p.76)

As a result of our heredity equipment, our particular past life experience, and the demands of our present environment, most people develop learning styles that emphasize some learning abilities over others. (p.76)

Jungian Types

Myers-Briggs Type Indicator

A job choice/success

A major function of education is to shape students’ attitudes and orientations toward learning.

Positive attitude

Thirst for knowledge

Not ‘learning styles’ so much as ‘lifestyle’ choice and approaches.

NOTE :> Learning styles are conceived not as fixed personality traits but as possibility-processing structures from unique individual programming of the basic but flexible structure of human learning

Orientations

Transactions with the world (pp 95-96)

C5 The Structure of Knowledge

Knowledge does not exist solely in books, mathematical formulas or philosophical systems, it requires active learners to interact with, interpret, and elaborate these symbols. (p.121)

Learning style is shaped by what is being taught, the faculty where it is taught and those teaching. Learners adapt to fit what is deemed necessary for the task with engineering, for example adapting compared to social science or the humanities.

Concrete - abstract

Archive - reflective

In his 1955 Lithograph entitled ‘lberations’ M.C. Esher captures the essence of the three stages of experiential learning:

Acquisition

Specialisation

Integrate Development (p.160)

Learning and Development in HE

Acquisition

Preparation

Basic skills

Utilise the tools of social knowledge

Specialisation

Selection

Meet social needs

Integration

Unique capabilities of the whole person toward creativity, wisdom and integrity.

Different learning environments required for different subjects and outcomes - the learner adopts. (p.198)

Affectively complex

Simulate/mirror

Current

Schedules adjust to the learners needs

Perceptually complex

Understanding something

Identify relationships

Define problems for investigation

Collect relevant info 

Research a question

Systematically complex

Solved problem with a right or best solution

Teacher as taskmaster

Behaviorally complex

A practical problem with not right or best answer

Students need to adopt the best learning approach required by a specific task - it is the successful learning of the task that dictates the learning approach or ‘style’ required NOT the students. (p.200)

Concrete experience

Best suited to:

Personalised feedback

Sharing feelings

TEachers as friendly helpers

Activities orientated toward applying skills to real-life problems

Peer feedback

Self-directed 

Autonomous vs theoretical reading

Reflective Observation

Teachers provide expert explanations

Guide discussions

Lecturing

Not task-orientated situations

Abstract Conceptualisation

Case studies

Thinking alone

Theory readings

Not group exercises

Personalised feedback

Active-experimentations tendencies

Small group discussions 

Projects, peer feedback

Homework problems

Applying skills to particular problems vs lectures, task masters evaluations right/wrong

Approaches that individualise the learning process to meet the students’ goals, learning style, pace, and life situation, will pay off handsomely in increased learning (p.202)

Teachers as coaches or managers of the learning process are not dispensers of information.

Curricula design

Content objectives

Learning style

Growth and creativity objectives

With experiential learning and once in work students take on the full range of learning approaches based on the environment and needs of what has to be learnt (p.207)

Lifelong Learning and Integrative Development

‘We seek to grow and develop because we must do so to survive - as individuals and as a world community. If there is a touch of aggressive selfishness in our search for integrity, it can perhaps be understood as a response to the sometimes overwhelming pressures on us to conform, submit, and comply, to be the object rather than the subject of our life history’. (p.209)

We are a ‘teaching species’ as well as a ‘learning species’. (p.211)

ME > Opportunities for creativity/role innovation (Schein, 1972) - the extent to which a career offers continuing challenges and opportunities for changing roles and job functions.

(p.228) Fig.8.2

Fact > Value

Relevance > Meaning

Courage, justice, love, wisdom

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Embedded Formative Assessment by Dylan Wiliam

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William. D (2017) Embedded Formative Assessment: (Strategies for Classroom Assessment That Drives Student Engagement and Learning) (The New Art and Science of Teaching) : Second Edition. Bloomington, USA. Solution Tree Press. 

Dylan Wiliam is to formative assessment what Chris Witty is to Covid

I’m getting used to Dylan Wiliam - I think of him as the David Walliams of Education, the Will-I-Am of Formative Assessment.

I’ve been pointed at his webinars, sat through a keynote or two, read the book and the read pamphlet ‘Inside the Black Box: raising standards from classroom assessment’ which he produced with Paul Black in 1998 and established his reputation. 

In my first pass of note taking I had over 60 quotes and ideas here, not all from Dylan William. With some editing I’ve got this down to 19 ‘Top Tips’ which are all set out ready to quote. 

I’ll go back to the book if needs be for clarification. In this case it is an eBook which makes it very easy as the digital version will correlate to actual print page numbers.

This is how I learn. 

It’s a slow and repetitive process: skim read a book to get the lay of the land, read it with an open notebook, then transfer the notes to a document like this. Then edit the notes and where necessary go back to the original book. Most important of all - give it a go. Over the last five weeks I’ve had a chance to apply some of the thinking to both online remote teaching and in the classroom face-to-face.  

When a book strikes me as really important I am likely to have it in print and eBook - they read differently and you take different things from each. 

These notes are for me to browse, refer back to and use when I next have a formal rationale or observation to write, as well as for every day reflection on the learning and e-learning experience I am currently going through. 

Myth Busting

Wiliam puts the evidence of learning above myth and has a number of bugbears. 

Good teaching is difficult

It is relatively easy to think up cool stuff for students to do in classrooms, but the problem with such an activity-based approach is that too often it is not clear what the students are going to learn. (Wiliam 2017 p.94) 

Wiliam disregards learning styles, ‘which have no discernible impact on student achievement at all’. (Wiliam 2017 p.11 also Adey, Fairbrother, William, Johnson, & Jones, (1999). Rather - ‘as long as teachers vary their teaching style, then it is likely that students will get some experience of being pushed beyond it’. (Wiliam 2017 p.48) 

Nor is Wiliam a  fan of ‘performance of a learning task’ as a predictor of long-term retention of learning (Wiliam 2017 p.47 from Bjork, R.A. (1994) Any mention of ‘neuroscience’ as the panacea annoys him. (Wiliam 2017 p.50) 

There is no shortcut

Wiliam’s firm belief is that formative assessment improves performance. (Wiliam 2017 p.11) His view - ‘the use of assessment for summative purposes - grading, sorting, and ranking students - gets in the way’ of learning. (Wiliam 2017 p.56) Education is overly prescriptive with rubrics. (Wiliam p.93 in Alfied Kohn (2006)

No one can do the learning for the student who does not engage.

Our classrooms seem to be based on the principle that if teachers try really hard, they can do the learning for the learners. (Wiliam 2017 p.225) 

According to Wiliam there is little evidence that the following ‘tricks’ have any impact of student achievement:

  • Summarisation

  • Highlighting

  • Keyword mnemonic

  • Image use for text learning

  • Rereading (Wiliam 2017 p.225) 

Wiliam sets out five key stages of formative assessment : 

  1. Clarifying, sharing and understanding learning intentions and success criteria.

  2. Eliciting evidence of learning

  3. Providing feedback that moves learning forward

  4. Activating learners as instructional resources for one another

  5. Activating learners as owner of their own learning

The Assessment Reform Group puts it this way. Assessment to improve learning requires five elements to be in place (cited Broadfoot et al., 1999) (Wiliam 2017 p.61)

  1. Providing effective feedback to students

  2. Actively involving students in their own learning

  3. Adjusting teaching to take into account the assessment results

  4. Recognising the profound influence assessment has on student’s motivation and self-esteem, both of which are crucial influences on learning.

  5. Needing students to be able to assess themselves and understand how to improve.

Challenge them!

I like Wiliam’s thinking that ‘good instruction creates desirable difficulties’ - that we learn and retain knowledge through struggling with it. (Wiliam, 2017 p.11) I know from personal experience that the greater the struggle I am willing to endure, the deeper and the longer lasting my learning. It is when I can face the struggle … that I struggle.  Good instruction creates what he describes as ‘desirable difficulties’ (Wiliam, 2017 p.47) quoting Bjork (1994, p.193).

Pedagogy Over Curriculum

‘A bad curriculum well taught is usually a better experience for students than a good curriculum badly taught’. (Wiliam, 2017 p.11) I rather think we can apply this to many situations, for example, that pedagogy comes first - not EdTech. 

Formative Assessment above all else 

The Wiliam mantra is that, ‘attention to minute-by-minute and day-to-day formative assessment is likely to have the biggest impact on student outcomes’. (Wiliam 2017 p.42) He defines formative assessment as ‘the process used by teachers and students to recognise and respond to student learning in order to enhance that learning, during the learning’. (Wiliam 2017 p.59). Formative assessment, according to Bloom (1969) is a kind of evaluation - ‘a brief test used by teachers and students as aids in the learning process. (Wiliam, 2017 p.53 in Bloom (1969) It is ‘the process used by teachers and students to recognise and respond to student learning in order to enhance that learning, during the learning. (Cowie & Bell, 1999 p.32) It is ‘assessment carried out during the instructional process for the purpose of improving teaching or learning’. (Wiliam 2017 p.59 in Shepard et al., 2005 p.275) 

I like this : ‘Frequent, interactive assessment of students’ progress and understanding to identify learning needs and adjust appropriately.’ (Wiliam 2017 p.59 from Looney 2005)

And if you need more ways to think of it, try this: ‘assessment, for learning tells ‘us’ ‘what progress each student is making toward meeting each standard while the learning is happening - when there’s still time to be helpful (Wiliam 2017 p.62 from Looney 2005 (pp1-2) Stiggins (2005)

All kinds of formative assessment are not equal

(Wiliam 2017 p.62) 

‘The evidence is clear that the shorter the assessment - interpretation - action cycle becomes the greater the impact on student achievement’. (Wiliam, 2016). He continues, ‘short-cycle formative assessment has to be the priority for schools and teachers, because the impact on students is greater. (Wiliam p.75) 

‘ … regular use of minute-by-minute and day-to-day classroom formative assessment can substantially improve student achievement’. (Wiliam 2017 p.81)

Design backwards from the learning outcome

(Wiliam 2017 p.81 from Grant Wiggins and Jay McTighe (2000)

Three issues in the development of learning intentions and success criteria that may be useful to think about. (Wiliam p.95)

  1. Task-specific versus generic scoring rubrics.

  2. Product-focused versus process-focused criteria

  3. Official versus student-friendly language

NOTE :> By being specific about what we want, we focus the students learning too much. ‘He who never made a mistake, never made a discover’ (Wiliam 2017 p.95 quoting Samuel Smiles (1862 p.275)

There are a number of techniques which appealed when I read about them and I have used them. These are techniques to help students understand and achieve learning intentions. (Wiliam 2017 p.104 from Clarke (2001)

This is simple, these phrases work 

WALT ‘We are learning to … ‘

WILF ‘What I’m looking for … ‘

TIB ‘This is because … ‘ 

Student Engagement Techniques

The teacher asks a question, selects a student to answer the question and then responds to the student’s answer, which is generally some kind of evaluation of what the student said. (Wiliam 2017 p.124) Teacher-Led classroom discussion.

Try some of these:

  • Wait time

  • Evaluative listening

  • Interpretive listening

  • Questions shells

  • Hot-seat questioning

  • All student response systems

  • ABCD Cards

  • Mini Whiteboards

  • Exit passes

  • Discussion vs. diagnostic questions

  • Alternative questions

Pose a question, pick a student at random

Pose-pause-pounce-bounce

  • Pose

  • 5 seconds - pause

  • Pounce-random choice

  • Bounce-what do you think (Wiliam 2017 p.129) 

App or Lollipop sticks (Wiliam 2017 p.129) 

These techniques are used to ensure that all students realise that all are expected to tke part and that it is ok to make mistakes. If someone does not provide a response then come back to them and tell them  “OK, I’ll come back to you”.  (Wiliam 2017 p.132) 

Then seek Response 2 and 3 and then return to the person who gave no response and ask them which reply they liked the best and ask them why.

‘Engagement and responsiveness - are at the heart of effective formative assessment’. (Wiliam 2017 p.142) 

Managing Challenging Behaviour

To change the behaviour criticise the behaviour not the student. (Wiliam 2017 p.171) 

It is quality rather than the quantity of praise that is most important - teacher praise is far more effective if it is infrequent, credible, contingent, specific, and genuine. (Brophy, 1981 in Wiliam 2017 p.171)

The use of feedback improves performance when it is focussed on what needs to be done to improve, and particularly when it gives specific details about how to improve. (Wiliam 2017 p.180)

Motivation

“It's up to me, and I can do something about it”.  (Wiliam 2017 p.183)

When students have to struggled in the learning task, the quality of their performance on this task reduces, but the amount of learning that takes placed increases (Wiliam 2017 p.190)

Feedback functions formatively only if the learner uses the information feedback to him or her to improve performance. If educators intend the information fed back to the learner to be helpful but the learner cannot use it to improve his or her performance, it is not formative.

Motivation is not a cause but a consequence of achievement (In Wiliam 20176 p.234) from Garon-Carrier et al., 2016)

Like sports coaching, teaching takes time to master

It takes years for even the most capable of coach to break down a long learning journey from where the student is right now - to where he or she needs to be. (Wiliam 2017 p.193)

Feedback should cause thinking

Feedback for Future Action. (Wiliam 2017 p.194) 

To be effective, feedback needs to direct attention to what's next, rather than focusing on how well or poorly the student did on the work, and this rarely happens in the typical classroom.

The response from the student to feedback should be ‘cognitive rather than emotional’ (Wiliam 2017 p.205) In other words, feedback should cause thinking by creating desirable difficulties.

Peer tutoring can be more effective than one-on-one tutorial instruction from a teacher. This is because of the ‘change in power relationships’. (Wiliam 2017 p.209)

And regarding students online not using their webcams he believed you can see how a student is really taking it by seeing their faces (Wiliam 2017 p.209)

Student Reporter

Put students in a group towards the end of the class so that they can discuss then report back on what has been taught.

Two Techniques that work 

(Wiliam 2017 p230)

  1. Practice Testing 

  2. Distributed Practice

These received high ratings because they were effective with learners of different ages and abilities and were shown to boost students’ performance across many kinds of tasks, and there was plenty of evidence that they worked in educational contexts.

If students complete a practice test and get immediate feedback on their answers, students will get the benefit of the hypercorrection effect for those questions where they were correct. (Wiliam 2017 p.231)

Setting Goals

Students are more motivated to reach goals that are specific, are within reach, and offer some degree of challenge. (Wiliam 2017 p.236 in Bandura, 1986)

When the goals seem out of reach students may give up on increasing competence and instead avoid harm, by focusing on lower-level goals they know they can reach or avoiding failing altogether by disengaging from the task. (Wiliam 2017 p.236)

TIPS

  1. Think ‘how am I going to teach this and what are the pupils going to learn?’ (Wiliam 2017 p.79) 

  1. Having an in-depth understanding of the curriculum may be of more benefit to student progress than advanced study of a subject on the part of the teacher.

  1. Students don't learn what we teach. (Wiliam 2017 p.77) 

  1. Teaching the goal. Driving as teaching. (Wiliam 2017 p.78)

  1. ‘When the pressure is on, most of us behave as if lecturing works but deep down inside we know it’s ineffective’. (Wiliam 2017 p.80)

  1. The teacher’s job is not to transmit knowledge, nor to facilitate learning. It is to engineer effective learning environments for students. (Wiliam 2017 p.80)

  1. Learners of all ages need to understand what it is that they need to learn and be able to monitor their progress toward their goal. (Wiliam 2017 p.95) 

  1. Don’t simply plan the instructional activity, but also plan how you are going to find out where the students are in their learning. You need to be clear about what we want students to learn (Wiliam 2017 p.115)

  1. Ask questions either to cause thinkin and to provide information for the teacher about what to do next. (Wiliam 2017 p.126)

  1. Beware - those avoiding engagement are forgoing the opportunities to increase their ability.

  1. The most important factor influencing learning is what the learner already knows - the teachers job is to ascertain this and to teach accordingly. (Wiliam 2017 p.166) 

  1. Much of the feedback that students get has little or no effect on their learning, and some kinds of feedback are actually counterproductive. (Wiliam 2017 p.167) 

  1. Do not mix grades and comments, just stick to comments. (Wiliam 2017 p.167) 

  1. Oral feedback is best. (Wiliam 2017 p.174)

  1. Too often feedback is counterproductive. (Wiliam 2017 p.178)

  1. Don’t provide students with feedback unless you allow time, in class, to work on using the feedback to improve their work. (Wiliam 2017 p.195) 

  1. Feedback should be more work for them than you! (Wiliam 2017 p.195) 

  1. A simple approach to feedback. Pick out two things to praise, then express what they need to do a constructive wish. He calls the technique ‘two stars and a wish’. (Wiliam 2017 p.214)

  1. Teachers have a crucial role to play in designing the situations in which learning takes place, but only learners create learning. Wiliam 2017 p.246)

REFERENCES

Adey, Fairbrother, William, Johnson, & Jones, (1999) p.36 A review of learning styles and learning strategies. London. King’s College London Centre for Advanced Thinking. 

Ausubel (1968) Educational psychology. A Cognitive view. New York. Holt, Rinehart & Winston

Bjork, R.A. (1994) Memory and metamemory consideration in the training of human beings. In J.Metcalfe & A.P. Shimamura (eds) Metacognition : Knowing about knowing (pp.188-205) Cambridge, MA MIT Press. 

Bloom, B.S. (1969) Some theoretical issues relating to educational evaluation, In H.G. Richey & R.W. Tyler (Eds). Educational evaluation : New roles, new means, part 2 (Vol.68, pp. 26-50_ Chicago : University of Chicago Press.

Brophy, H (1981) Teacher praise: A functional analysis. Review of Educational Research, 51 (i), 5-32

Clarke, S (2001) Unlocking Formative Assessment. London, Hodder & Stoughton

Cowie, B & Bell, B (1999) A Model for formative assessment in science education. Assessment in Education : Principles, Policy and Practice. 6(1), 101-116

Looney, J (ed) (2005) Formative Assessment: improving learning in secondary classroom. Paris. Organisation for Economic Co-Operation and Development.

Shepard et al., 2005 p.275 in L.Darling-Hammon & J.Bransford (Eds) preparing teaching for a changing world : what teachers should learn and be able to do (pp.215-326)

Soderstrom, N.C., & Bjork, R.A. (2015) Learning versus performance : An integrative review. Perspectives on Psychological Science 10 (2), 176-199. 

Stiggins R.J. (2005) Assessment for learning defined. 

Wiggins, G., & McTighe, J. (2000) Understanding by design. New York. Prentice Hall.

William, D. (2016) Leadership for teacher learning . Creating a culture where all teachers improv so that all students succeed. West Palm Beach , FL, Learning Sciences International.

William, D (2017) Embedded Formative Assessment: (Strategies for Classroom Assessment That Drives Student Engagement and Learning) (The New Art and Science of Teaching) : Second Edition 

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Census 2021

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How would you have answered the 2021 Census had this been 1911? 

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After three months teaching online I take a class face to face

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Jean-Michel Basquiat 1960-1988

To get their attention at the start of the class and to get them thinking I showed a series of artworks by Jean-Michel Basquiat. In part this played into the final task of the module which is to create a ‘Poster’ which will be part drawing, part text, diagram and infographic but it also introduced today’s theme on mental welfare and the mind. 

I used this quote from Jean-Michel Basquiat.

“I don't think about art while I work. I try to think about life.” (Basquiat, 1986) 

I also pointed out that Basquiat died of a heroin overdose when he was 27 and so introduced the theme of mental well-being and the way we cope with stress. 

A student suggested that as well as writing down mechanisms of coping with stress, we also included ‘how not to … ‘ to which the class put ‘alcohol’ and ‘drugs while also recognising that silence, or ‘going crazy or being aggressive was not a solution. This related back to Basquait, who we understand was “attracted to intelligence more than anything and to pain” and the Laurie Anderson quote from Radio 6 Music on an uncle who went ‘crazy in the attic’ for three years suffering from ‘shell-shock’. (Anderson 2021) 

Throughout I wanted to make use of the evidence-based research of Dylan William (2017) regarding formative assessment, especially on the ‘Five Key Stages of Formative Assessment”. (Wilaim, p.11) With this in mind, the first step was ‘Clarifying, sharing and understanding learning intentions and success criteria’. (Wiliam, p.11)

The goal of this class was stated within the context of the end of the module task to create a poster. That by the end of this session students would understand how all the previous sessions on the hands, feet and face would fit together. I took an A3 sheet and drew up my impression of one approach for this poster: a roughly sketched human figure with head, hands and feet, with elements from each mind map added to, in turn, a hand, a foot, the face and the mind/brain. It was also suggested that the page might be split left and right between how personal hygiene protects you on one side of the page while looking at how personal hygiene protects others on the other side. 

Having got them to write ‘mind’ or ‘brain’ in the centre of an A3 sheet we then recapped the set of enquiry questions we have used before: Who? What? Where? When? Why? How? I took this opportunity to try the technique proposed by Wiliam (2017, p.126) he learnt from a teacher called ‘Pose-pause-pounce-bounce. Here I would Pose > a question, ‘Pause’ 3 seconds for a response, then ‘Pounce’ on someone else who would hopely provide a response and then go back to the original person to seek confirmation and clarification. In the moment, despite having these steps written out, I found I would pose a question, not give adequate pause, pick someone else who may not reply either then fall back on taking a response from someone who was ready with an answer. I then missed the chance to go back to the person to whom the question was first put.  To achieve this in future I should slow down, as I still don’t know the students, I should use the floor plan, and be quite specific about marking down who is asked the first question and even use arrows to point back to them once I have moved on. This floor plan should also show the layout from the teacher’s perspective from Front to Back to make it easy to use. 

I also used a phrasing technique that is also suggested in Wiliam (2017, p.104)  “to help students understand and achieve learning intentions”. This is known as WALT, WILF and TIB as in  “We are learning …” “What I’m looking for …” and “This is because …”. I found I use the second of these most frequently so that I could take any discussion back to the task of this session and the end of module poster assignment. 

I realised after the event the value of each student having a chrome book and access to the Internet as when being taught remotely this formed an important part of the class as they were expected to do their own research, ideally looking at Medical News Today and other reliable sources of information, as well as creating a Pinterest gallery of visual ideas. The issue in class, which may have been the same when working from home, would have been to have had a surface large enough, such as a kitchen table rather than a small desk, or working from a laptop, tablet of phone so that they could do their mind map. I also realise that I naturally worked on an A3 sheet clipped to a drawing board while they were working with whatever pad of paper came to hand. 

Regarding access to the Internet I should also have encouraged those who had used the App Simple Mind to continue to do so, while introducing Google Draw, Adobe Spark and Canva as additional tools they could use for the end of module assignment > a poster. 

I could have prepared in advance a short introduction to the brain/mind - indeed there are surely many on YouTube that are suitable. We should be amazed at the 86 billion neurons and our capacity to think and feel - wherein lies the problem when it comes to mental wellbeing. 

I repeatedly tried to bring the topic back to Mental Health and Uniformed Services looking at the topic from the perspective of your own mental health and that of others. Three clips were used. In the case of content from Twitter I talked through a short exchange on different kinds of trauma from a Clinical Psychologist and someone sharing their state of depression. I had a short piece from Radio 6 Music with Laurie Anderson talking about an uncle who spent three years ‘going crazy’ in their attic from ‘Shell Shock’. 

In this way an attempt was made to get a discussion going on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD) for example around questions on rape, compared to anxiety and depression. We also considered how an individual copes with PTSD, anxiety and depression. A range of responses were given: talk to others, seek professional help, relax with music, a walk or playing electronic games. However, it was a struggle, now that I could see the students in front of me, to get them to take all of these opportunities to jot things down on their mind map. Time and time again with the video clips it was as if the default practice was ‘put your pens down, look at the screen’, rather than listen and take notes.

Whereas working online, 90 minutes at a time, we could take a 20 minute period to work on producing the mind map, here it was kept to 15 minutes. Here at least I could go around, see what they were doing and guide them. It was surprising how little was being done in some instances, that the repeated opportunities to add detail from the information provided were being missed. 

With the one to one the opportunity came for immediate spoken feedback. Here I took note of Knowles (1980) regarding using non-judgemental feedback. Although the students are young adults, age 17 typically, I felt that an approach developed in adult-learning would be most helpful - after all these young people are in an FE college, not school. 

Ample time was given to students to respond to my questions with the expectation that other students would be listening, taking notes on their mind map and contributing. I would have liked to have given a short insight into concepts such as ‘positivity’, Kolb’s spiral (Kolb, 1984 ) being ‘In The Flow’ (Cskiszentmihalyi, 1990) and motivation coming from a good coach.  We did discuss mindfulness and the website Medical News Today was once again offered as a reliable, uptodate and clear source for research.

REFERENCES

Basquiat, J-M (1986) Quoted in the New Yorker. Wikipedia (URL) (accessed 11 March 2021) Interview with writer Isabelle Graw in 1986. Jean-Michael Basquiat on How to be an Artist on website Artsy > https://www.artsy.net/article/artsy-editorial-artist-jean-michel-basquiat (accessed 11 March 2021) 

BBC Radio 6 Music - The First Time … Laurie Anderson talks to Matt Everitt (accessessed 14 March 2021 https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m000sqnr

Cskiszentmihalyi, M. (1990) Flow: The Psychology of Optimal Experience. New York. Harper & Row. 

Knowles, M.S. (1980) The Modern Practice of Adult Education: From pedagogy to andragogy (revised and updated). Chicago, IL: Association : Revised Second Edition. 

Kolb, D.A. (1984) Experiential Learning: Experience as the source of learning and development. Reprint electronically produced by permission of Pearson Education Inc., New York (First Edition). 

Medical News Today.  Medical website. Accessed 11 March 2021 https://www.medicalnewstoday.com/ 

William.D (2017) Embedded Formative Assessment: (Strategies for Classroom Assessment That Drives Student Engagement and Learning) (The New Art and Science of Teaching) : Second Edition 

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Like magic

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Teaching is more like doing magic. An illusionist might rely on tricks and technology, but that is not what holds you attention or diverts the eye. From EdTech to the classroom is like grounding the spaceman; I am now in the thick of it, rather watching from a distance. It is a very different place. I am also finding increasingly that I would prefer to rely on my ability to hold the class rather than deferring to often to the technology - even a video might not play, or there'll be no sound. As for slides - forget it. My default use to be lots of them plotting out my every move and word. I now have none at all - none. Perhaps a holding page if a class is online. Perhaps a few supporting images that I may or may not refer to - that could as easily be single frames or in a Doc.

You can't get more accesibile than a person talking and gesticulating. In some instances someone who has a hearing impairment can lip read. You can provide the proverbial hand out - NOT a print out of your slides (if there are any) but a prose approximation of what is said. It won't capture the interplay between teacher and student - and a lot of that now matters too. You build knowledge through constant banter - smart banter known as formative assessment where you seek to winkle our a student's knowledge or lack thereof. They try to express what they think or know, and others add to this (or not) and on returning to them you find they have adjusted their view a little - or at least added to their knowledge. 

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Reflection

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I'm not doing enough of this. I don't have to be submitting it for review, but everytime I sit through a class I should pick out what I feel works (or not) and note it down.


This takes me back to my first months with the MOADE - you'd have thought I'd learnt my lesson by now. I do blog a lot. I do talk about this kind of thing to other people often. Sometimes I even record these Meets.

I have a backlogue of lessons to go over. But this is 2021, I have a Meet recording of most of them so can go over the class that way and not have to rely on my attentiveness and recollection. Indeed, you are often distracted by all kinds of things and see things quite differently later on. 

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My blinding headache

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What do you think it is?

Caffeine and hot chocolate. 

I drink them all day. I go onto decaf in the afternoons. I wake with a headache at 4:00am

Too much screen time.

Yesterday I did my usual splurge from 4:00am to 5:30am, returned to bed for a couple more hours and was back at my desk from 8:30am. I've given up breakfast for the lockdown so would have been on the news channels and social media on an iPhone or iPad whenever I am not in front of the laptop or desk.

This is how I kid myself that I am getting some variety: desktop, an iMac and two monitors - standing room only in a miniscule 'study' or laptop, an iBook, as now on one of those trays in or on bed depending on the temperature and time of day.

The screen time yesterday ran through from 'work' to a Town Council Meeting that ran until 10:00pm at least. I ducked out at 9:30pm but was online for another hour sorting out an issue on The Western Front Association website - now fixed, but only resolved at 4:00am this morning when I figured out which box to tick to enable a set of journals to appear to our Digital Members but not the rest of the world

And I worry about my head.

What about my legs?

I joked to a colleague who had done a sea swim and ran/walked 12,300 steps last Saturday that I have gor my steps into single figures ... like six. As in six hops from the bedroom to the bathroom. Should I be surprised that anything so strenuous as a 3 hour Christmas Day walk onto the South Downs at the bottom of the road will result in achilles tendonitis? 

Head, legs, body and soul

I need to think again about sailing. I mustn't give it up. I should get fit for it. And there'll be no skiing if I don't strengthen the legs.

I do stand most of the time at my desktop computer though. But this too can be a problem I am told.

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How many courses have you done since graduating from the OU?

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Thursday, 4 Mar 2021, 05:41


I've never counted how many short online courses I have done since I graduated with the MA in Open and Distance Education in 2013. I did a further two modules of the MAODE straight up - as if to finish the set and because I couldn't let go of learning; I still can't.

Since then, if asked how many courses I had done I might have said 11 or so. Maybe I would have muttered that I'd done around 11 on FutureLearn, 6 on Coursera and a couple of other one offs, such as a course with Oxford Brookes on Teaching in Higher Education. 

I have just done a tally.

Since FutureLearn launched in 2012 I have signed up for no fewer than 45 of their courses, including the first on Web Sciences from the University of Southampton. Of these I completed 17 and went the full hog and got certificates for 6.

Coursera knows how to keep the time-wasters at bay. You pay upfront! This explains why I have signed up for 8 courses and completed 7. These have been on Learning How to Learn, Photography and Search Engine Optimisation. I also did the Coursera Community Mentor course and become a mentor on the first two modules mentioned here. 

I also took the 8 week Take Your Teaching Online course from OpenLearn. Do it! This one's free smile 

Meanwhile, out in the real world, I do life drawing. Not so much in lock down. But there's some contrast. Life-drawing and learning to sail! 


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Keep a reflective journal to record your thoughts and feelings and use it to develop your understanding of how students learn and thus inform your practice.

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This is the easy bit. I'll reflect on a thing while people board the bus and the bus leaves. I'll still be there at the bus stop reflecting on things when the bus comes back the other way an hour later. If I look up around then I'll fret that I am on the wrong side of the road and am about to miss my bus.

Does that make any sense?

FutureLearn are running a course on moitvation. I ought to do it. The introductory blurb says it all:

Motivation involved value, expectancy and delay.

Value > how important your goal to me?

Expectancy > how likely am I to achieve this? Tick stuff off in small steps. 

Delay > The longer it takes to achieve one of these small goals the harder it is to remain motivated.

So there we have it.

Looking at the detail there are other core reasons for there being problems: 

I have come to the course late.

I want to be on the Postgrad Course on Learning Design with Illinois University.

The 'mentor' role has been thrown out of the window due to Covid-19 closures and lockdowns: my mentor was off ill with susptect Covid, the department went into a two week lockdown and then all schools and colleges closed anyway.

Meanwhile my brain is all a flutter over an idea that came to me in a dream:

What if my brain were tapped by a group studying with me - that my brain patterns could be transposed to them instanteously as a means to enhance the communication of my ideas. I reason that this would be worse, not better - that it would be lost in translation, that if the neural connections in my brain can be imagined as a shildting handprint in which each finger touches a different part of the brain, this same pattern will be a misfit even meaningless to another's brain that is wired and has changed in exceedingly different ways. We are not androids. Whatever impressions we may give on the surface (gender, age, ethnicity) we are not born and raised the same and the raw materials each person is given differs in any case. 

I tried to explain this concept as a proposal for doctoral study. 

Meanwhile I reflect on the dangers of being curious in the 21st century

An over indulged brain is also an easily distracted one. Any thought I have I can follow up with a search. Anything and everything thrown at me can be a stimulus to something different. I collect screenshots and record meetings as if I will some time have reason to go back over this stuff. I rarely will. I won't even label it.

I am now genuinely fearful that I cannot even keep tabs on what I do; that my actions and thoughts are so transitory to the point of being transparent - the only trace I have that I did a thing is online NOT in my brain where it never has a chance to lodge. 

That or early onset Alzhiemers. Or ADHD at play.

Time to get back to ticking boxes.


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Where to begin ?

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Darwin Day on Humanism

A week during a Pandemic Lockdown feels like a month - at least it does to me. Every day I am faced with a new challenge. Most of the time I am OK with this, sometimes it gets me down. I am online too often and for too long - probably.

Every day starts with an hour or two or more refreshing pages of The Western Front Association (First World War History) and getting content onto social media for the day. I am played by and follow the analytics closely. 

I in the listening post of EdTech: I am looking for and looking out for anything that can make a difference. I am rainding across No Man's land a few times a week too. I will try everything once or twice and if nudged by the right person I may try it more often than this. I have taken to the UCL Knowledge Lab platform 'Learning Designer' as one of the tools I use to plan lessons or a series of lessons. I've just used it for a set of four 1 hour classes on Personal Hygiene, Infectious Disease and Stress for our FE Uniformed Services Department. Inspired by a CPD talk from Scott Hayden I am going to push to use a Mind Map app. We will start with pen and paper, but migrate to the students' mind map app of choice ... I used Simple Minds, the college, via Google Webstore has a collection of others. I've used Simple Minds for a decade and can make it sing with embedded images, links to websites, Drop Downs and Pop-Ups, embedded video and all kinds of other fancy stuff.

Other news awaits. 

To end the week I'm sitting through the Darwin Lecture from the Humanist Society. I have decided to become a Humanist - in this Census Year of 2021 it sounds more responsible and matches my Green and Vegan credentials - and is less flippant than declaring ourselves as Jedi Knights as we did a decade ago. 


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Feeling wanted ...

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Thunderbird 5 the Space Station featuring John Tracy

Early days but a few teaching fails online talking to a blank wall of distracted teens is slowly emerging into something that will engage them - even if they want to be off camera and mostly silent. My eclectic mix is a challenge. I don't get to know a group of students, even a particular cohort or subject specialism. 

Four simple lessons learnt:

> it matters to be a 'subject matter expert' as you can talk, discuss and provide an inventive and relevant response to meet the needs or interests of the students or group at the time.

> channelled enthusiasm goes a long way, not gushing, nor over-confident, but the person at the helm with a sense of the direction to take.

> a video conference (as only the BBC will call it) i.e. Zoom (even if you're on Google Meet) can be as EdTech as it needs to be. The camera, microphone and Chat are enough to take a class and enough for most people if it is there first time. There is no need to throw in extras like slow 'death by PowerPoint', or faster 'death by PowerPoint' by making it interactive with the likes of PearDeck or Nearpod. A Google Form Quiz will do.

> where analogue meets digital. Hold something up to the camera. Prof Sir Hew Strachan couldn't be doing with 'present now' screens so during his gripping talk on the First World War he simply held up the covers of two or three books. I've taken to using a mini whiteboard while I am asking students to draw a Venn Diagram or Mind Map on whatever comes to hand. When they are done they hold it up to the screen - it works! Some go digital and use their phone or tablet, others get artistic with coloured pencils while others just doodle a thing on the back of an envelope. I can screenshot what they show me (I should have a recording of the class anyway) and for better resolution they can upload, share or email me their efforts. 


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A year in the life of ... in less than a minute

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My world for the best part of a year ... just get me through February.


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Digital Literacy - Making sense of a complex world online

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Though hollowed out by 'stage fright' for most of the day I last night deliverd a formal, observed 90 minute online class to a group of students. To get my head in order I successfully used the UCL Learning Designer; I have been learning how to use this on the UCL FutureLearn Massive Open Online Course which has been running for the last two weeks and end this week.

Summary and Pie Chart Introducing a 90 minute online class on Digital Literacy

This is one the Learning Designs I created > Digital Literacy  

The session was recorded. Though I'll need some breathing space before I revisit it. I will also have formal feedback from the person who observed.

I have to wonder why I put myself through this kind of thing! I guess I wanted to wake up my sleepy soul and have succceeded in doing so. 15 minute before I would have (I had the line in my head) "Eat Shit". This is somewhat exaggerated - I would have made excuses. I would have preferred to have been going on stage to deliver Hamlet in a thong.

But I settled in quickly. I am not delivering a TED lecture.

The pacing was about right. Introduce this, show about of that, seeking their point of view. And I purposively kept the Tec low key (despite the subject). This is not the place for me to show off my skills - it is all about them.

My insight into teaching and learning could not be greater. As I realised a decade ago, even 20 years ago when I first did an OU Module on Open and Distance Learning - the theory has to complement practice, not be something that is done in isolation. Who does? How could I think I can study education without doing it myself? You can't learnt to dance only by reading books - you can only acquire an appreciation. But you can be an art critic without being able to paint? 

I've attached my rationale and a 'running order' with timings for the lesson I delivered. The timings were spot on - more or less. We took a 10 minute break an hour in which I readily accommodate and just added 10 minutes to the plan and continued accordingly. 

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Too busy to blog

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Age 13 I started a Five Year Diary. Very quickly you feel you have to write something each day. I did. A few cryptic notes. Decades later I blog. For a while it was a blog a day. These days I scramble notes together across the day. Thinking about it I could readily blog three or more times a day: I don't. 

Too busy to blog does not mean I am not at least regularly noting things down. It just takes a click to Recent Documents or search in my notes to find out. I do this to keep a record of things I may forget. 

This morning I went into my 'study' (tiny broom cupboard of a space) and saw a page of notes I had put down in the middle of the night. I forget the thoughts or that I'd written them down - but am glad that I did as it forms the spine for a talk I have to deliver on employability in 10 days time.

Meanwhile my focus is on three things: observating online sessions delivered by others and writing up a report, preparing and delivering my own online sessions and getting my head around the Learning Designer from UCL's Knowledge Lab featured in their Blended Online Learning FutureLearn MOOC. 

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Keen

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Eager to get some time in doing this 'teaching online' thing I took a group of 'Adult Learners' this afternoon on use of Social Media. I used the Learning Design tool from UCL Knowledgelab - just an electronic planner which automates some of the processes, things I have done here with sets of cards or shared in online in 'swimming lanes' or what not.

Learning Design layout

The laugh is that we did the above for nearly two hours. It took a good 15 to 20 minutes just to get my 'students' in the same place and after that I wanted to give each person a thorough chance to reveal their interest and experience for everyone's benefit. I skipped one or two things as a result, but nonetheless gave time to the links I put up. These breaks to check a few links were always limited to just 3 minutes. The discussion afterwards could easily last 15 to 20 minutes as I gave feedback to each response and there were 7 in the 'Class'. Not a regular college class. 

I find the above of value nonetheless and if I use it for an observed class next week at least I will have practiced it.

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It all starts here >

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Habits are hard to change. 

11 years on I still feel that by putting content here I will be able to find it next week, next year and my AI doppleganger will be able to feed off it to and give the impression that I am still posting content at the age of 105 when in fact I will be totally occupied with my role as the 'Bastard Duke Norm of Williamdy' down the road at Battle to recall the conquest of these islands by the quas-civilised third generation Vikings from France. 

I'm engrossed in the UCL FutureLearn Diana Laurillard Blended Learnning MOOC. I need this stuff because I've eleted to work on the front line. I'd like to feel like i'm the urologic surgeon at Guys hospital who is working in A&E support because of Covid - I am the 'bookman' wannabe academic who has taken his head out of his books to teach. 

Anyway, believe me. I at least will run around like a Medusa eyeing down anything that might help. This does:

  • Learning through acquisition > listening to the teacher, watching a video, demo, reading a book, a website.
  • Learning through inquiry > going to the teacher, library or internet to find something out. 

And the more active learning processes.

  • Learning through discussion > asking questions or answering questions, exchanging ideas. Listening, responding, articulating, arguing …
  • Learning through practice > teachers set up task goals, to  generate an action, interpret feedback.
  • Learning through collaboration > working together on a project to produce a shared output.
  • Learning through production > creating something for the teacher to evaluate.

However, what I do in an observed or demonstration class will surely differ to what I may deliver over a week or term? And differ again when it is done online? I have seen and taken part in excellent online asynchronous provision - I have also suffered awful classes too - maybe even delivered some myself.

Going anywhere? Not yet, never entirely.

I come here to get down a first draft which rarely gets reworked elswere - so at least I've captured it. I do keep a weekly review though, a single doc where I chuck in everything that week, which for me is usally just four days, but with evenings (and nights) thrown in can equate to a heck of a lot of input.

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This week

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Views around the South Downs during a January 2021 hoar frost

This week could run to 73 pages of A4 with screenshots. It is a Google Doc I keep. Actually, that's just for the four days Tuesday to Friday. 

Teachers will be 'live' with students teaching online next week. All are on a quick learning curve both technically and culturally. The cultural shift is nudging towards greater communication, networking and collaboration. Teachers need to stop being soloists and work as an ensemble - or as they do at the OU in an orchestra with the conductor the Chair who lead the unit craetion, not the tutor 'delivery' any part of the unit syncrhonously and being the 'face' of a course for a particular intake. 

We are exposed and challenged as teachers and students and so learning a lot. More than ever before it matters to take notes! I feel at times like the last person on the planet to take notes with ink on paper, as well as digitally in mindmaps, or like this, supported with audio and video recordings. I don't go back through it all, but I do go back through much of it. I will even have some of it transcribed electronically so that I can verify what was said, by whom and get the wording right. 

It leaves a lot undone. A hoar frost the other day and I took loads of photos on an extensive walk around the edges of Lewes onto the South Downs. I've not posted a single one, though I have at lost gone through them. 

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Just Notes

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My day notes from WC 4 Jan with screenshots run to 117 pages. This is six days work as I included Saturday. Sunday I am offline and devices reading. I go through 'Torchbearers of Democracy' by Chad Williams.

In the past I might cut and paste my notes here, tag them and leave them 'private'. It is this that has made this singular space such a valuable resource as I have added e-learning related content hear consistently for over 10 years. 

Maybe I have. A synthesis of my favourite bits does make it onto Reflections on E-Learning on Wordpress.




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Getting any sleep?

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With Trump eager to create turmoil I'm up early to bare witness to the demoacry fighting back. I think of Donald Trump and I'm reminded of Kaiser Wilhelm II. Both men had a ludicrous sense of their brilliance and leadership abilities. The former nudged Europe into world war. Where is Trump taking it?

The night before I'd watched David Attenborough on iPlayer, saw the Greta Thunberg documentary then fell asleep only to wake as the yacht I was taking across the Atlantic hit one large wave too many and capsized.

I need to find a way to turn my brain off at 10:00pm and not permit it to splutter back into consciousness before 4:00am the next day - or preferably 6:00am (at least).

I am trying yoga and light exercise. For the second time, it happens with each lockdown, I have jiggered my left leg. First time round it was the knees, now it is the achilles heel. What did I do? I went on a walk sad 

So, promising not to post here excessively anymore I might direct you to a proper blog post in my other place > Reflections On E-Learning where I used a series of interviewes on The World at One (BBC Radio 4 on 5 January) where, as they do morning day and night, at some point, bring up education and what a fudging mess that has been made of it. 'Students wanting to study ...' 

Could The OU, overnight, do for Secondary Education what it is has done for HE over the last 50 years + ? Not a big ask. But what is needed now are courses that can be completed remoteley (at a distance as we used to say) and are gain accredited assessment and certification at the end. Roll on home schooling. 

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Too Black, Too White

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Ely Green's 1970 autobiography 'Too Black, Too Green' is a unique and astonshing read. I have read it through twice, all 637 pages and I am about to start again. It is so densely packed with episodes, insights and human stories - in particular, survival in situations of extreme danger when as a young African-American of mixed origins (German and African) he so closely avoids death through mobbing, lynching, police or AEF Marine brutality and court martial. 

I won't pain you with my 3,000 words here, but my full review can be found on my external blog 'Reflections on E-learning' > http://bit.ly/TooBlackTooWhite 

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Back at College (remotely)

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Day one we get a breifing from the head and vice-principal via Meet in which our position within current Government guidelines are shared. We look forward to the New Year and the multitple challenges our insitution will face.

Meanwhile I am looking at materials that could be used by tutors to help them progress with their teaching online. I'm unimpressed which what is offered. Each college/institution is unique - some more unique than others, so trying to provide training that is aimed at a different cohort, with different needs and using a different platform for teaching will help no one and irritate everyone.

Meanwhile I have today to decide whether to sign away £1,700 and take a Masters level module in Instructional Design with the University of Illinois. I'd be more tempted if I could spare the money.]

Meanwhile, I tentatively press on with migratting content by various categories to me external e-learning dedicated blog 'Reflections on E-Learning'.


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Feeling fragmented ...

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Uncertainty has me clutching at something I can control - I work from home more often than not, whatever happens. Whatever happens this might mean some union support to apply to work from home in order to make what has become common place over these last nine months. 

My reading has got out of hand; I blame Amazon. I engage with one publication and a entire set of other tasty offerings are put before me. Once was a time that 'getting lost down a rabbit hole' took hours, even days, as you read an article, chased up a reference and waited for the book to be retrieved from the stacks ... or took a trip across town to find the journal burried in another library.

David Attenborough's 'A Life on our planet' is been my Christmas reading. And for others I bougth it for. I want it in the hands of hundreds. I wonder how we might post a copy through every door in Lewes. Would the coucil go for that? Not a Green council, not all those trees however sustainable the source. Yet the message is a relevant for a town of 17,000 as it is for the nation and the globe: we must change our behaviours. 

Then there is the incredible biography by Ely Green, 'Too Black, Too White' which after two close readings with notes I am about to review. I stumbled upon this during my research into the African American soldier's experience in the First World War.

And much more besides.

Today Amazon are offering discounts of 20% or more on Kindle publications. How can I not be caught in this snare? 

We Return Fighting edited by Kinshasha Holman Conwill

Thomas Paine's Rights of Man by Christopher Hitchnes

The Words of Thomas Paine 

And

100 Great Black Britons



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Zoom

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I've subscribed to Zoom. I may only ever have used Google Meet, but I need the platform anyone can join with ease. I just took my first 90 minute 'class' in the hot seat. There ware only five of us and the pace was leisurely. It was an introduction to social media, indicating how we should see ourselves as 'visitors' or 'residents' and wearing a 'personal' or 'instiutional' hat (Dave White). 

I then shared a solar system of we website or blog with the plantes of Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram and YouTube spinning around it.

I've got the 90 minutes to go back over. There is still one straggler who hasn't made iether of the two prevous sessions. 

The more practice I get the better: there's be plent of this next term with both staff and students I do not doubt. 

Meanwhile 'Reflections On E-Learning' is taking shapre on Wordpress. I am trying to pull together themese from this blog and began with 'communities of practice' as it is something I will be developing with my colleagues in the New Year. One or two are already interacting on LinkedIn so that is the place to start a group.

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Immerse too deeply and drown

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Monday, 21 Dec 2020, 08:05

When in doubt, start another blog, add something else to the 'to do' list, find a different App to organise your life, then feel too scrambled and take a walk.

A two week break should be that - not an opportunity to make up lost time. A large stack of books begs me to read them, but some long abandoned DIY tasks clammer. Putting up pictures intstead of ticking off another chapter read feels like an achievement.

Yet I make time to run the first in seven online sessions on using social media. And take delivery of a Green Screen.

I must master WordPress, not just toy with it.

I've not put much up to YouTube in a decade and have never done a podcast; these things await my attention. 

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Migrating content to Reflectionsonelearning.org

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Edited by Jonathan Vernon, Tuesday, 22 Dec 2020, 17:18

Reflections on E-Learning title for WordPress Blog

I've set up another external blog to carry most of my 'reflections on e-learning' content. 

Reflections on E-Learning

> https://reflectionsonelearning.org/

Most further content will be private unless it is closely related to the MAODE, OpenLearn or Open University courses.



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