Here s an update from my blog for…

Here s an update from my blog for the course, still catching up for week four but have been inspired to change my main blog through all the learning on this course sineadourke.com and have a load of new followers so am heartened that I am making progress in this brave new virtual world of learning ! Thank you for your oh-so-generous course. http://sineadyism.edublogs.org/

Certain contexts either F2F or online in spite…

Certain contexts either F2F or online, in spite of their differences, may favour connectedness or not.

When we think of democratic schools, we know that group deliberations are a common practice. As the decisions are in the hands of the whole school community, conflicts and rules are decided in general assemblies, discussions are held openly and decisions are taken by vote. Usually these schools are relatively small and everyone knows each other closely. In these schools respect for each other’s opinions and citizenship are in their core principles. So the sense of community and connectedness is very strong.
Summerhill – http://youtu.be/KIyaKWeFhDo

Regarding online learning, I suppose that courses that stimulate discussions, groupwork, peer-review, certainly favour that sense of community. Communities have many different levels of interaction, and an online course of 1 or 2 months, may generate a community that will end in a short time, eventually a few participants may extend their interaction for some common interest.

Another level of connectedness may be fulfilled with communities of practice, which extend collaboration for a long time and may have other longevity. Lave and Wenger developed the concept integrating the three dimensions:
1.Domain – A domain of knowledge creates common ground, inspires members to participate, guides their learning and gives meaning to their actions.
2.Community – The notion of a community creates the social fabric for that learning. A strong community fosters interactions and encourages a willingness to share ideas.
3.Practice – While the domain provides the general area of interest for the community, the practice is the specific focus around which the community develops, shares and maintains its core of knowledge.
Interview with Étiènne Wenger – http://youtu.be/63rQ3S8EHoA

I’ve only parcially watched the videoconferences of this…

I’ve only parcially watched the videoconferences of this week, since they seemed too basic. I’ve read the introductory text of this week and downloaded the two articles «Rapport in Distance Education» (from IRRODL) and «What the best online teachers should do» (from Merlot journal).

From the summary of this week webpage I produced an animation with the main factors to take into account when starting an online course to build rapport with students – http://www.powtoon.com/p/g1DqM825ohd/ .

Teachers that have a psychology background are usually familiar with icebrakers, professional trainiers use them as well. In academic environments and more directive lectures this is not a major concern.

In online learning a «getting start» scene is useful, though with hundreds and thousands of participants it may be difficult to reach some level of personalization.

However, there are ways to keep the «approachability», the weekly newsletter we receive from this MOOC is a good idea. To have direct messages in one’s email is a good strategy.

I remember that in my 1st MOOC, the backup team used to send 2 email messages per week – one in the beginning of the week with a synthesis of the previous week activity and another one, at the end of the week, preparing for the following week. I was very impressed, because it worked, it helped to catch up with what was going on and makes one feel included.

ALOHA from rainy London My new blog is…

ALOHA from rainy London!

My new blog is in a POEM..

Taking into account the postings on the community wall about short attention spans and since I often think in lyrics and colour.

Please enjoy and thank you once again for a great week of materials from all participants and Tutors.

http://sineadyism.edublogs.org/2013/09/13/once-upon-a-time-in-an-online-learning-course-poetry-in-mooc-motion/