Tools for online engagement & blended learning
Back in the early 90s, I studied the LeTTOL course: Learning To Teach OnLine. We’d only just got email, but I had high hopes for the future of tech! (That said, I was also one of those teenagers that bought a Commodore 64 and had far too much patience when typing copious amounts of code that spilled out of nerdy magazines; [though less patience when after half an hour of thumb-twiddling the tape drive reported: ‘save error’..])
While technology became a huge part of my life as a musician, it didn’t really impact on my teaching until Lockdown2020. But that wonderfully heady mix of interest + necessity + time resulted in an explosion that, let’s face it, had been brewing for decades.
I always knew my research and experiments were for much more than just online learning, though. I was fascinated to see how the tools that were now available could be used to solve some of the specific (and ubiquitous) issues we face as teachers. Do you share any of these challenges? Dealing with the over-contributor; engaging the passive and disengaged; ensuring Q&A isn’t that clichéd sampling of a couple of learners’ thinking, but a tool to get every learner to process an answer to a question..? That sort of thing.
I also always knew that at the end of lockdown I wouldn’t lockup (strange how that isn’t the opposite..) all my wonderful new collaborative-learning tools; I’d take them with me back into the classroom.
Next week’s open session: Tools for online engagement & blended learning came about basically because people kept saying that they enjoyed using my new online tools. In the session, which is next Friday afternoon, January 21st, we’ll be looking at 11 of my favourite learning technologies. But being ever-aware of the wide continuum of confidence with technology, this isn’t a session in which you’ll learn how to use all 11 strategies. Our focus will be wholly on the ‘value’ of each technology to you as a teacher. In other words, the learning issues they will help you overcome.
The ‘how-to’ bit is easy, after all, technology is just clicking and typing. And for every technology, I provide a guide that says (and shows) where to click and what to type.
So if you’d like to learn how technology can change the way your learners prepare for lessons and how they engage with learning during lessons then do come along if you’re free. And do please forward this link or tag a colleague who might find this session useful. More details and booking information are available here: https://ccqi.org.uk/toolsforonline. And there’s a few quotes below to give you an idea of what to expect:
• ‘I really enjoyed learning about some new resources, but the main thing for me was relating it to the pedagogy. It will make me think more about WHY I am using a resource and what I want my learners to get out of it, rather than simply a ‘have they remembered what they have learned?’ scenario.’ Bolton College
• ‘It is not just the technology that will be different, it will be the reasoning behind them that will be more prominent. Pre-learning for instance, will play a bigger role.’ Cogent Skills
• ‘Chomping at the bit now to put new learning into practice. Very inspirational session!’ Innovation Alliance
• ‘My brain is a bed of blossoming seeds’. NPTC Group of Colleges
• ‘Eye Opening, what a fantastic session.’ Wirral Metropolitan College
Thanks for reading.
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