Wow, I can’t believe my first master’s class is complete! I couldn’t have asked for a better instructor or layout for the course. I felt the pacing and assignments worked well with my schedule as a mom and teacher. Although the course was online, I felt the personalized feedback I received was the same (if not better) than I would have received in a face-to-face course.
This course pushed me to try things I would not have otherwise tried & use resources and materials I would have not considered. It helped me relate to my students as a learner & reminded me of what makes an effective educator. I think it is so important to consider the process, not just the end result. It is easy to forget that as a teacher, this class (especially the networked learning project) helped me remember that. I had so much fun learning and creating….so much fun that I forgot it was for class. I hope to make the learning in my classroom feel like that somehow. Is that possible with math? I told my kids proofs are like a game… they didn’t find them as fun as I do. Maybe it’s a work in progress kind of thing.
I would say that overall I haven’t changed the tools I use in my classroom (YET!!)…I’m still getting a handle on how to rearrange our fast paced curriculum, but the learning in this class has changed HOW I teach & what I expect of my students, I hope to continue to learn the guitar…maybe I will super glue the tips of my fingers to make playing hurt less. Even if I only dedicated an hour a week, I plan to keep pushing myself to play the guitar. I want my students to know that I haven’t given up. Moving forward, I hope to utilize the idea of repurposing tools in my classroom. My students are so creative… they turn vocabulary sheets into basketballs to shoot into my hoop, haha. But seriously, they do have some of the most unique, intelligent ideas. I hope to encourage them to share and maybe create things this year; although I am still trying to wrap my head around the idea of repurposing and how I could use it efficiently in the geometry curriculum I teach. I also hope to use networked learning to encourage learning at home that supports the learning we do in my classroom. I have a student who has been out for health issues. I may give him key words and have him use youtube and help forums to fill in the gaps from what he has missed. In fact, it would be a great method for helping students fill in gaps in learning in general. I still have a few questions regarding fair use and creative commons, but I have been researching and will continue to explore as I continue to create. Right now it seems like everything is fair game if I can prove I added value and am using it for a different purpose, right?
Lastly, we read in several articles throughout the class how educators need to provide learning experiences that create innovative thinkers and problem finders. I am going to move beyond the textbook this year (as much as allowed) and require my learners to think and apply rather than memorize. Geometry is literally the study of the earth’s measurement (geo= world & metry= measurement). I would like to bring learning to life through repurposing & networked learning. Not exactly sure how, but the idea is the first part of the plan. Oh, and as I plan & teach I will try to keep what Einstein said in the back of my mind: “Never memorize something that you can look up.”
Cheers to a great class! I learned a lot.
School of Rock