Sunday, 18 November 2012

My reflections on Week 7: Web skills



Hi Courtney, Nate - the guest moderator and my colleagues,

Greetings.

I am indeed happy to post the reflections on Week 7 tasks of Web Skills course.  This week, I learnt so many things especially the articles of Samuel P-H sheu's "Learner Autonomy: Bird-in-the-Hand or Band-in-the- Bush" and Thanasoulas "What is Learner autonomy and How it can be fostered?" provided an excellent input on the areas of autonomous learning and self-directed learning.  The earlier article focussed on the teacher who followed the systematic approach and how the foster the habit of learner-centeredness in the classroom.  Further, it presents the information on the standardized tests that the teacher is imbibed to follow and help their learners do good in the exams.  There were no room for the teacher to inculcate the habit of making their learners to learn from outside.  As Anderson (2000) pointed out that the real learning takes place outside the classroom and the learners are given freedom to try new methods to complete the tasks.  The latter article gives an insight into the autonomous learning, its definitions, and characteristics of autonomous learners, the predominant theories such as constructivism, critical theory and positivism.  Further, it deliberated on the issues of the learners and their strategies like cognitive and meta-cognitive strategies, learner attitudes, self-esteem and the use of diaries to make a note of the reflections of the learners.

Secondly, I learnt the basics of making of use of a single computer in a classroom.  I have understood the strategies and applications for using a single computer for learning purposes.  It gave me ennumber of ideas though I did familiarize with the tools which the basic learner knew about the use of computer.  But, the identity of the learner is that how effectively he can use the computer as a resource and the computer as a tool and effective methods for assessing the learners.  Further, the seven steps/ categories of using a single computer in a classroom have made me think the effective methods of using the computer.  The seven categories which are highlighted are the administrative tools, communication station, presentation tools, information station, publishing tool, learning center and simulation center.  It makes me understand the different issues to be handled while using a computer in a classroom and outside.

Thirdly, the additional resources are very handy to work on the various topics related to learner autonomy and the teacher autonomy, 25 ways of integrating the computer into the classroom, self-access materials are assimilated and practiced throughout.  The designing of activities using ABCD model with the assistance of a single-computer which made me think innovatively and implement the creative skills of the learners.  The majority of the times the teacher has not had the autocratic approach to decide upon the kind of input to be given because of the constraints created by the system in an educational environment.  But the learner-trainer has the complete and controlled freedom to use the computer in a classroom and to make the classroom more interactive and appealing.  This systemic-approach of the teacher is many a times quiet handy to him. 

Fourthly, the use of ‘Wallwisher’ is an effective tool to create a web page posting and up loading of websites and videos and notice board, incorporating audio, .doc and .pdf files for effective use with fellow colleagues.  My experience with the wallwisher tool is really interesting.  I have added certain web links and video files with relevant activities to be tried out with the learners are worthy doing.  I have added an article and a book for the colleagues of this course concentrating learner autonomy in mind.  My perception of learner-autonomy has enriched by the inputs given. 

Finally, I was nominated by a colleague for the final project review to give the constructive and critical feedback.   The willingness to work in a collaborative environment makes each one of us more responsible.  I look forward to comment on others work as well to be commented upon my work. 

When the root of the tree has not been split and sprawled, there is no branching out of establishing the vast spectrum of knowledge.  Thanks to Courtney and her team.

S.Sankarakumar

1 comment:

Aashish Pande said...

Hello Sankarakumar,

I also share your interest in reading the article of Samuel Sheu. I also understood the strategies and applications for using a single computer for learning purposes just like you did. Just as you mentioned, learning 25 ways of integrating the computer into the classroom was very interesting. I am glad to know that you also liked wallwisher.

Your post is very comprehensive and covers the entire week.

Thanks for sharing,

Best wishes,

Ashish Pande