Week 4 ONL 152 course (13/10 – 19/10) – Topic 3 Collaborative learning and communities

Time to blog again .. so four weeks into the ONL152 course – what can I share?

Well, I’m still trying to come to grips with weekly blogging …. What do I think about blogging? Blogging feels too planned, too much like writing a personal journal (I’ve never been a fan) and my blog posts seem to me to be just self-indulgent garbage (I am sorry if I sound harsh when I say that). Blogging just feels too contrived and forced for my liking. I doubt very much that I’ll continue blogging after this course, but for now I remain committed to the learning journey and exploring all aspects of the online learning environment. What I do appreciate is that my weekly blog entry makes me take time each week to conscientiously reflect on my learning journey on the ONL152 course … and I do also see the value in sharing my learning experiences with my peers 🙂 So despite my feels of awkwardness when blogging, I will continue to write and share a blog post each week of this course.

Online collaborative learning has been a most wonderful revelation. It feels so new and exciting, its interactive, it is filled with “sparkle” and “bling” thanks to amazing Web 2.0 tools and I just love it 🙂 My ONL152 PBL group “The Internet Explorers” is made up of just the most amazing group of people and I have them to thank for introducing me to the “awesomeness” of collaborative learning! Our weekly online interactions and engagement focus around the problem-based scenarios have provided me with powerful learning opportunities.  I think because I can engage with my team members and contribute in a way that feels authentic and comfortable. Yes, it took time for that sense of community to develop and technical difficulties have posed a challenge along the way – but that’s all part of the online learning journey. I do prefer our synchronous meetings, real-time group sessions (Google hangouts are just great for this), but asynchronous aspects/opportunities are important too (we use a Google doc to reflect and record all members ideas and activity).This is all possible thanks to the myriad of free Web 2.0 tools that we are able use to connect, collaborate and share.

I have learnt that: collaborative learning + digital literacies + web 2.0 tools = learning3.

This week I am pleased to share that my PLN grew, as I added a host of new people to my Twitter network and I found out about a bunch of awesome educational Twitter Hashtags which I now follow. For now, I remain essentially a digital content consumer and now explorer of digital spaces and tools but I do believe I have an entrepreneurial spirit. I will when I have more digital skills and knowledge, take the new “digital me” to market.  I am painfully aware that any online contribution leaves an indelible record and this leaves me feeling nervous. So before I start actively posting online I want to carefully consider two important questions “how and where I want to share the new digital me?” along with taking some time to consider “what digital impression do I want to leave?”. I want to be purposeful in my contribution and it must feel authentic and ‘true’ to me. I am committed to changing my online practice, but as they say in Swahili … pole-pole or slowly-slowly

pole-pole adv.

from polepole “slowly, gently, softly, quietly; be calm, take it quietly, don’t excite yourself, never mind”: slowly; take it easy [< Swahili]. [1]

Bring on week five and Topic 4 … #inspired #readytolearnmore

[1] http://humanlanguages.com/swahilienglish/rlsp.htm

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