Week 1 & 2:
When I began this project four weeks ago I was not certain that I could produce the expected final product. Learning a brand new skill only using digital/media learning platforms such as Reddit, Mashable, Twitter, YouTube and online help forums was overwhelming. My preconception coming into this project was one of doubt, in myself. Therefore, I created an achievable learning goal, which was knitting a basic beanie. This learning strategy supported me by shifting my focus onto my specific needs as a learner to help me take control of my own learning. Bransford et. al. reminded me that our intelligence is malleable and in order to achieve a “ firm foundation of factual knowledge” I would need the subject matter presented in multiple forms (2000). These were actionable steps that I could accomplish. I did this by creating a Network Learning Tracker.
When learning a new concept or idea, I immediately turn to what I already know to activate my background knowledge to support me. For this project it was Youtube. At the time, I also noted my resistance to the other ed. tech. platforms, which appeared to be daunting. I had not expected this mental challenge or fixed mindset to surface so early in the process. This gave me pause in considering my students and their learning process when they are introduced to a new concept. What helped me to overcome this first ‘mental’ hurdle was drawing upon our readings in Week 2 through the lens of effective learning. Bransford et al. highlights effective learning as being in a “deliberate practice” of the task, monitoring our “learning experiences”, and receiving feedback that focuses on our understanding of new learning (MAET, 2022). Again, these were actionable steps that I took to support my learning and progress.
Through the lens of TPACK, I also explored how learning was presented and what digital mediums supported that learning.Through digital exploration, I began to grow my Technological Content Knowledge (TCK) alongside my Technological Pedagogical Knowledge (TPK) to develop a discernment for which digital platforms could be utilized for specific types of learning. Thus, supporting Bransford et. al’s. idea of personalizing learning environments (2000). Mishra and Koehler’s approach to learning/teaching through technology integration using the TPACK framework challenged me to think about “the complex ways” in which technology can be taught and learned in school (2006).
Week Four: Reflection
One thing that surprised me through this learning process was that by week 4 my 21st Century Learning Skills were being developed in new ways. For example, some of the challenges that had felt overwhelming in the beginning weeks were now more easily navigated. When I had a question or was unsure of the next step, I could consult my NLP Tracker, PLN or my blog to generate problem-solving ideas. I noticed that I was open to learning more about media platforms that in the beginning made me uncomfortable and I avoided. Additionally, Dweck’s idea resonated with me that learners are more likely to persevere when they are motivated and focused on learning versus on the performance or in this case the end product (MAET, 2022). As well, I felt successful because I no longer had a fixed mindset. For example, I dropped stitches several times and instead of getting stuck in the problem, I was motivated to consider different ways to approach this problem. I did this by stepping out of my comfort zone to explore other social media platforms like Mashable. This was a significant shift for me. With persistence and time on task, I grew my 21st century skills like, growth mindset, critical thinking, self determination and problem-solving.
The finished product is a positive by-product and bonus of this experience. In the future, I will apply this knowledge of network learning to my students by intentionally embedding educational technology to personalize their learning. I would also like to support my technology director by providing teachers with professional development (PD) opportunities in understanding technology integration inside the classroom and making student-centered digital learning a priority.
Bransford, J., Brown, A.L. & Cocking, R. R. (2000). How people learn: Brain, mind, experience and school. National Academy Press.
Devlin, C. (2022, June, 19). 21st century learning skills. [Comment].
Devlin, C. (2022, June, 19). Blog. [Comment]. Specialeducationld.org.
Devlin, C. (2022, June, 3). Network learning tracker. [Google Spreadsheet]. https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/13YEqI6TjqqTE6YFp4tJsCKI6-bJh333gsCOFVfWuY-g/edit#gid=0
Devlin, C. (2022, June, 25). NLP final video. [Video].
Devlin, C. (2022, June 25). NLP Flash Cards. [Google Slides].
Devlin, C. (2022, June). PLN. [Comment]. Infograph.vengage.com.
Devlin, C. (2022, May, 29). TPACK. [Comment]. Specialeducationld.org.
Masters of Art in Educational Technology. (2022, Summer). Course Content from Unit 1: 1.2: Explore learning and understanding. Michigan State University, CEP 810: Teaching Understanding with Technology.
Mishra, P., & Koehler, M. J. (2006). Technological pedagogical content knowledge: A framework for teacher knowledge. Michigan State University, CEP 810: Teaching Understanding with Technology. https://d2l.msu.edu/content/enforced/1598284-US22-CEP-810-731-222510681-EL-14-204/Unit%202%20-%20TPACK/Mishra_Koehler_2006_TPACK.pdf?_&d2lSessionVal=s3OPavAvmwmT67nFEm8DMCS4I&ou=1598284