This post is part of a #5post5days challenge issued by Carlo Fusco. Please take time to read the other blogs, and join in! Five posts in five days is not the same as one per day, and you can start any time! 1/5 posts available here. 2/5 posts available here.
On my very first day as a secondary Principal, a parent called and spent 30 minutes insisting that there was no way her child would be taking any eLearning courses. I was shocked.
The picture in my head for the word “eLearning” was vastly different from the one in her head.
When we say eLearning, what do people see? What assumptions are they making?
Is it old distance education booklets, moved online? Is it the idea that kids should independently read and learn content, then be tested on how well they remember it? (or copy from others who ‘did’ the same content before?)
Or is it teacher directed classroom thinking moved into online spaces? Do we assume that there must be some Learning Management System controlled by the teacher with a “course” uploaded for students to “do” and for the teacher to “mark”?
“students remain consumers of teacher-directed content instead of becoming creators of knowledge within a context that they can actively control.”
Or do we consider how online learning can completely change what is possible for our kids? If we engage our students in solving adaptive, relevant problems, with other students and experts who could be anywhere in the world, and we let kids create the content relevant to them at this time, we can enable our children to gain the skills they need in this year and in the future.
Online learning allows us to create the conditions for students to take agency over their own learning, and to achieve and learn far more than we might believe.
We need to imagine learning outside of a teacher-owned course on a learning management system.
We need to teach on platforms owned by our kids, and empower them to direct their own learning – learning that doesn’t end and become inaccessible on the last day of the semester.
But to get there, we need to name our assumptions, and then deeply question them.
What other words in education to we need to rethink the definition of?
5. Student Success
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Featured image from Pixabay