After reading the articles on “connectivism” I realized that I am better suited for this model of learning. I have been teaching my students
using the same model, but never realized it had a name. I am not a theorist
because I am more interested in knowing how to use different models in
teaching. How are these models going to help my students and me as a teacher? I
have never taught a complete class online. Most of the classes are f2f with
online tasks worked into the curriculum.
The students who are suited for this new way of learning vary. Some adults are not ready to voice their opinions about their knowledge because
they are afraid that they might not know as much as another person in the
class. I teach Japanese women in four of my classes. They are more willing to
voice their opinions in an e-mail than they are in a classroom. Of course there
are some students who do voice their opinions in a very subtle way.
They do have the capacity to want to know more than what they already know. They are very good at establishing connections and using them. If
one student is sick, there are many suggestions on what she should do to get
well. They use each other to find out where the best places to eat, shop and
vacation are located.
Their learning does not only take place in the classroom. They make good use of “non-human appliances” which include afternoon tea parties,
lunches, garage sales and e-mail. They use the Internet to connect with their
friends and family in Japan, to print photos, and to make their vacation plans.
I have been their facilitator in helping them learn to use the Internet and the various learning experiences that the Internet can provide. I
have created lessons for them to complete online. I involve my students in their learning experiences.
We have a book, but do not follow it cover to cover. They choose the lessons
that are more necessary at the moment.
Lessons are going to the doctor are more important than the ones that
talk about going to work. None of them are allowed to work because of their
The problem that I do see with the model “constructivism” and using it for online students is the non presence of the teacher. Adult students
need more attention when it comes to looking for information. Adult students
may not be used to going out and finding connections. They expect the teacher
to give them the information that is necessary. I think that with time, these
expectations will change. This type of model will also help students to prepare
more for the workplace.
Learning is a knowledge creation process...not only knowledge consumption.
www.youtube.com/v/XwM4ieFOotA&hl=en_US&fs=1&%22%3e%3c/p...">Networked Students (You Tube Video)