I have been working today on setting up a DAILE Moodle course for our Election ’08 voting for all of the Middle School students. Simple enough to do as I can now create a Moodle course in less time then I can a word processed document. Of course I do not need to print it out either. I am taking a course through UNC’s School of Education in order to be certified as a Carolina Online Teacher (COLT). I am doing this not because I expect to be teaching online solely but rather to keep learning myself. David Warlick had a great post this past week called “Two Future Trends” and I think the post is interesting, I liked the line:
What do schools look like, who task themselves with graduating students who have taken on learning as part of the lifestyle — learning lifestyle.
Moodle allows for a learning lifestyle and not just learning for now or for SAT prep. Other links that came across my learning view today come from a fellow classmate in my COLT course: The Futures Channel which has the tag line of “Connecting Learning to the Real World”. I did not even know about dotsub or Odiogo until today but am already seeing uses. How do I learn, my iGoogle brings me RSS feeds from my leaning community.
The title of this post, Levels of Learning is because on any given day, I can watch students podcasting, doing online DAILE Moodle assignments, collaborating in a FirstClass Workspace or other technology infused lessons. I hear about other levels of learning where there is no technology integration but rather a commitment to make sure there is no technology. For instance, a parent talked with me today and wanted to understand why a student would have to hand write a paper in ink any longer. I had no answer for this as I see no reason and was astounded that this was happening in the same school where students were doing the other activities. There is too much distant between these levels of learning.
How can we close the distance? It is not just technology but pedagogy. We must all as David Thornburg said years ago: “Prepare our students for their future and not our past”.
If we do not close the distance, we will see the distance grow much to our detriment. What is it like for my students to navigate this uneven learning field?