Friday, 9 November 2012

Friday Reflection

Online and overland communication!

In a week when Sandy premièred in New York followed by snow,  the power of the internet for meetings and connections was for me reinforced.  The Wednesday hook up or Hangout happened  attended by other members of the Bank Street OLC.  Microphone problems aside it was possible to carry out a meeting, even though I was resorting to chat messaging, that was a thoughtful and provided new perspectives for my own practice.  The fact we could speak in real time across three continental shelves leads to greater understanding of for example terminology and other descriptions of online learning activites.

This week I have been chipping away at my own black box understanding where coding and computer science is concerned.  I am part the way through an Alison Diploma course on Programming in C.  The basis to the reasoning for attempting this I have blogged about in my last post.  I have had a look at the Wiki pages for Google Course Builder and will start looking at putting the materials together for Project Scratch.  This is a  CPD project for teachers to start to learn how to code using Scratch.

Thursday, yesterday, I embarked on an overland journey to talk to a small, expanding company run by very pleasant people. They have selected a particular niche in the online education sector.     Delivering learning to groups of pupils via virtual learning environments.  The model they are following is try to get the pupil to be immersed in the activity and have ownership. 

They are based in South Gloucestershire   After becoming lost trying to follow Google maps and drive at the same time I can understand why. The nature of 21st Century working is Teleworking (a representative organisation in the UK is the  Telework Association).  Their's is a prime example of this activity. 

Fish Hill a 1 in 10 hill with great views
A Cotswold town
So after driving down Fish Hill (and back up again) I arrived in the Cotswold town.  As you can see a chocolate box High Street.  It is close to Sudeley Castle.  Having spent nearly five hours getting there I have to say the purchase of a discounted Road Map most valuable item bought this month (silly me thought I could just rely on Google Maps' directions forgetting the vagaries of UK highways Authorities signage and desire to redesign road layouts).  Prior to this purchase I had been following my nose and luckily it was working properly and I was only 15 miles from where I needed to be.  The map will be accompanying me Google Maps just there to calculate journey mileage and potential time!!  A lot of miles (500 or so) to eventually get back to Suffolk at about 4.30 pm, (left at 5.30 am that morning) but worth the trip to see how others are approaching the task of online learning.

Returning back to the reflection.  Last week I set myself the task of looking further at the Virginia Tech Model of learning activities .  I have developed my thinking a little further to include representation of the model as scattergram.  Included has been the step to incorporated a the model of Revised Bloom's Taxonomy and Vygotsky's Zone of Proximal Development.  This has been shared with members of the Bank  Street College OLC.  I will update the blog later to show the new model additions.

So for next week.  To pursue further leads for collaboration within the OLC group to move forward Project Scratch.  Blogcast the ideas of extending the Virginia Tech Model.  Continue to look at coding since we have an OLC deadline/waymark coming up and want to be able to have at least an outline project working.  Like the idea behind the NYC Learning Hive.  Have viewed the new initiatives launched in the UK by Mozilla.  A Hive or OLC is really appealing to set up with local volunteer centre (for whom I work with from time to time) and the local council.

Weekend starts here, POETS day being enforced (Push Off Early Tomorrow's Saturday!).

1 comment:

  1. Hi Philip,
    Even if you're not able to attend, the session schedule for the Mozilla Festival could lead to great ideas/contacts/resources for your PD.