Opening up my world

It’s interesting how you pull certain ideas, phrases from content that aren’t perhaps the main idea. I guess that’s part of constructivstism and connectivism (still haven’t totally got those concepts firm in my mind).

Will’s recent reflection on Social Computing and subsequent comments, challenged his thinking. While the gist of his latest discussion focuses on considering “big picture” thinking, the phrase

“pushed me to think”

caught my attention.

I spend a great deal of energy and time pushing others to think and considering new ideas and ways to make learning more relevant and authentic. Often I think I’m like most with strong beliefs in that I’m less likely to consider alternative thinking. I do appreciate people who open up my world and thinking and these folks are found online and off. Three big areas in which I’m being challenged are:

  1. Social Networking for kids
  2. CyberBulling
  3. Assessment Practices

1. Social Networking…My basic belief regarding social networking and its implication for students and teachers is that everything has potential. Recent discussions about Twitter and Ning elevate the discussion to question their value.

2. CyberBulling…I still waffle on this one. My post summarizes my view but I still struggle with the amount of emphasis this issue deserves. I’ll continue to read and ponder the ideas and accept the challenges. I know that we’ll have to develop some plan for our division but I hope its focus is not in creating fear and trepidation but rather thoughtful, rationale understanding.

3. Assessment Practices…developing best practice around assessment has been a focus for me and our school division for the past several years. This discussion on final exams, serves to stimulate ideas on just one small aspect of this issue. Again, my ideas are there but I certainly am interested and value those who disagree.

I just these things help me to see I don’t really operate in an echo chamber but am truly beginning to open the walls of my learning and hopefully classrooms.

No walls

*took this photo on a drive this winter and have been looking a post to use it with..