Sunday, March 29, 2009

Online Learning

Not to sound to overly simplistic, or arrogant, but an online course is only as difficult as the learner makes it. It is true, that some educators dish out quite a few assignments due to the fact that it is an online course. More often this isn't that case, but you have to take it in stride. I believe that I am a good online student because I like working in the comfort of my own home. I also believe that I bide my time quite well and I see not time constrictions. It helps a bit being young, and working on your degrees one after the other without break while living with your helps a WHOLE LOT :):)
When tackling an online course, make an outline of what needs to be done. Visit the sites you will be working with the most. Register (become a member of) with the sites and write down all of your usernames and passwords. Become familiar with them and email your instructor in case of problem. If your course is so simple as just logging in, grabbing your assignments and going at it, then consider yourself lucky. With a technology course, you may find it overwhelming the amount of info that is presented to you. But please relax, it is...just info. Nothing that requires you to become a rocket scientist to absorb. Take a deep breath, read your material, then proceed. More often than not with a tech, ETEC course, you will be using different sites to post your findings (research) so don't stress. Perhaps some blogging to show your classmates how you feel about a certain subject, and even some critiquing of online articles to show your breaking down of thoughts. Whatever you do, do not FREAK out. You will be fine if you lay it all out, and work on your assignments a little every 1 to 3 days. 

Online learning for the k-12 students can be a wonderful idea. The up and coming generation is already on their cell-phones, on myspace, facebook, youtube, blogger, ning, and so many other sites. Introducing them to some online instruction via the methods they already use will more than likely work like a charm. The instructor however can not get too loose with the students because he/she can lose track of attention from the students. Keep all the blogging assignments separate, or perhaps as extra credit at the beginning to see how it works out. I think this can be an excellent way for classmates to interact with each other. Have them go to a class chatroom and be anonymous. Chat with your students, as an educator and see what is going on with them. This can be an excellent way for someone to overcome a problem, personal or other and can relieve the student of some burden. Talking to someone, even if you do not know exactly who they are, you know its your classmates and it makes you feel at ease. It can offer a different spin on educating students. Nowadays, learning just has to be fun for the students to pay attention. You can't fight fuel with fire ;)  :) 

As far as my philosophy tell me if it ties in to the k-12 environment. Anyone can learn any technologies regardless of AGE ;) With patience and understanding all is possible ;)  ;)  ;)


  1. got rather philosophical on me here. :-) So what about online learning for K-12 students. Can they learn in this environment? What do you mean by 'getting too lose' with the students? I see teaching the K-12 levels requiring a differently structured course than a Master's level course built on a constructivist approach as what I'm doing in our course. Your thoughts?

  2. I think online learning for K-12 is a good idea. But it isn't for all the districts. Some districts are not as well off as others and not everyone can have the time to have access to a PC. What I meant by too loose(didn't explain it well) was that teachers may let their guards down with all of these technologies and become "buddies" with their students. You may think that there is nothing wrong with having friendships with your students, and there isn't...if you are smart with them. Buddies tend to not be so critical with each other and not worry so much about who did what and how. That is exactly what a teacher should avoid, by not becoming loose with your students, you can keep the teacher/friend relationships at a good area away from each other.

    At the beginning, you may have to spoon feed your students all that is needed to be in an online environment, and that is fine. We aren't dealing with college level students yet, so we must be understanding and helpful with these technologies.