This week is my final week in CEP 810 and as the class comes to an end I wanted to take a little bit of time to look back and reflect on this whirlwind of 7 weeks, and think about what I learned, what I want to learn going forward, and how I feel about all of this.
One of the main things that I learned over this time is the importance of constantly trying to improve. This wasn’t a direct learning outcome of the course, but between reviewing “learning”, to how technology should impact learning and learning environments, to the development of learning networks, the one common thread that I took away from it was that education, and any field within education is constantly growing and evolving. We must evolve with it, or be left behind. So whether it is using your professional learning network regularly to learn new information or new ways of presenting information, or by testing out new technologies in your classroom you can always be improving and advancing as a teacher, and we must do this.
Another important thing that I learned during this course is the use of Professional Learning Networks. This is very closely related to my first point, but is different. Using a Professional Learning Network means that you can have a larger and wider network of colleagues than physically capable under normal circumstances. You can use technology to connect and learn from educators all over the world, and this is something I plan to use immediately and regularly in my education career. I have already started applying this to my own career, and intend to integrate it into my students learning experiences as well.
Because of this course I now have a deeper understanding of many different areas in learning, learning environments, and technology applications to learning, but something I have become more curious about and want to seek deeper learning about is the use of technology to access information and instead learning to apply this information to learning. I love this, in theory and classroom practice, having classes and units designed so that I can let students have access to technology and the information it contains, but I am curious about how this transfers into reality. Does this reliance on technology for information reduce individuals ability to perform when technology is unavailable? How will learning and knowledge be different from individuals who became experts in a field before this over abundance of technology was present? Are we creating an overreliance on technology? As Simon (1996) said in his book that learning requires individuals to understand deeply information so that they can interpret new information (p. 16) which means that as they are learning information they must not just interpret it but learn it to start. It creates a situation of deciding what information just should be interpreted and what information needs to be deeply learned.
Stick around as I continue learning and growing!
Simon, H.A. (1996). Observations on the Sciences of Science Learning. Paper prepared for the Committee on Developments in the Science of Learning for the Sciences of Science Learning: An Interdisciplinary Discussion. Department of Psychology, Carnegie Mellon Univers