Sunday, February 24, 2013

Now that you have a deeper understanding of the different learning theories and learning styles, how has your view on how you learn changed?

Being in an educator for the last 25 years, this is not the first time I have met the gentlemen of the learning theory club.  However, my thoughts change every time I visit with them.  I suppose since we can be assured their views on learning are not changing, it must be mine.  What can we contribute that change to? Maturity...a nice way of saying I'm getting older and wiser, possibly. 

Being this course I declared that I was clearly in the constructivism category. I still believe , because of my strong connection to technology, I relate to this learning theory the best.  However, I can also see myself in the adult category simply because of the crazy demands of life.  

What have you learned about the various learning theories and learning styles over the past weeks that can further explain your own personal learning preferences?

The introduction of the "Adult learning Theory" has been the new learning experience for me.  I found it interesting that this is now considered a learning theory.  Honestly, I believe that many of our High School students are going to take on the "Adult Learner " characteristics. With the introduction of blended classrooms, where students are in class two days a week and on line three days a week, they will be thrusted into that category.  I am glad I had this opportunity to study this to get myself ready for this change.  

What role does technology play in your learning (i.e., as a way to search for information, to record information, to create, etc.)?

This is not a fair question for me.  If you will remember, my career choice is a technology integration specialist.  I am involved in technology every minute of every day.  In fact, I would go into shock if it was taken away.  Last week I sat through an important meeting, the first thing the presenter asked was for us to put our technology away.  Honestly, I thought I was going to go into withdrawal. I can not tell you how many times I caught myself reaching for my phone or my ipad to check my email.  Taking a look at my bedside I have my computer, my ipad, my mini ipad, my iphone, my kindle, my Acer, and Nexus 7. Not one of those electronic devises are for my personal use.  Each one has a use for one of the schools I work with. (Do I have a GREAT job?)  One Hundred percent of my job is new learning because I am helping teachers teach in new ways. One Hundred percent of my new learning is acquired from technology.

Sunday, February 10, 2013


  • Take a look into my mind.  I designed it in black for a purpose.  It's a secret and I am trying to remain stealth.  You see, I have most of my colleagues convinced that I am just "smart" in actuality, I have an amazing personal learning network.  Take a look at every all of the avenues I have to learn.  

    I really enjoyed this assignment because I really has no idea how connected to connectivism I am.  

    One of the blogs I read, Learning for Life, pointed about a that Connectivism is not  new idea, but new technology has given us ways to “connect” or “interact” faster and more easily. (Richard, 2012)  I am old enough to really understand that statement.  My "mind map" would of looked much different just 10 years ago.  There would of maybe been two stems, one for the professional development and one for the teachers lounge.  Amazing!  No wonder I love technology! 

    Twitter is my top tool.  I enjoy using it because of the 140 character restriction.  You need to get straight to the point and many times I am in the middle of a project and I need a quick answer.  

    Connectivism refers to the capacity to form connections between sources of information, and thereby create useful information patterns is required to learn in our knowledge economy. George Siemens (2004)  All of my learning about connectivism  tells me its' not about just the individual but about the broader environment, and all aspects of my learning network have some type of social dimension to them that encourage connections to my environment.

    Richard, J. (2012, may 18). [Web log message]. Retrieved from Connectivism and Global Collaboration in Education

    Siemens, G. (2004). Connectivism: A learning theory for the digital age. ElearningSpace. Retrieved February 10, 2013 from Google Scholar.

Sunday, January 20, 2013

The Brain and Learning

What a fun (?) totally confusing week it has been for me as I continue my adventures of becoming an Instructional Designer.  For this post I have been asked to find at least two articles/post that I can continue my studies on the brain and learning, information processing theory, and problem-solving methods during the learning process. (Wow, I sound smart) However, as mentioned above, I am frustrated.  It seems as if there is too much information and not enough time. 

As I started to look for some articles I struggled to find ones that made sense to me at the level I was at.  I spent 3- 4 hours of heavy searching and finally settled on these. 

Take a look at this.
This is my kind of website/blog.  An interactive website about the Human Brain and Behavior. 

I believe this site is short of amazing.  Unfortunately, I can not find an author, however, I can tell you that it is funded by stitute of Neurosciences, Mental Health, and Addiction (INMHA), one of the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR).  I enjoyed the way it was layed out that it was easy for a beginner and there was more then enough information for advanced users.  
When you click on the site manual, you will see the site map.  If we are not careful,  we will get distracted with all of the goodies found there like, pleasure seeking behavior or pleasure and drugs.  However, what is most interesting is the Memory and the Brain section.  This section is broken down into two sections, How Memory Works, and Forgetting and Amnesia.  This site would be a valuable site for students of any level who wish to go a bit deeper into the study of the brain and learning.  

I also found an article titled Learn something new-your brain will thank you by Gary Marcus

As an online learner in Instructional Design we should directly related to Gary Marcus’ post on why learning something new is good for my brain! He explains that “…hearing something new is a signal that the brain is learning something…” (Marcus, 2012, para. 4). G. Marcus goes on to discuss myths related to learning or if you will non-learning in that generally people do not enjoy learning new tasks. I found this article interesting and relevant because we generally might not “having” to learn new things, but if we are able to seek out and learn topics of interest, learning becomes more enjoyable!

Isn't that the key to becoming a good  great Instructional Designer?  My goal is that they will absolutely forget they are "learning" something new.  I want them to enjoy the experience so much that they immerse themselves so deeply that they want to keep going deeper without directions from me.

Dubuc, B. (n.d.). The brain from top to bottom. Retrieved from
Marcus, G. (May, 2012 10). Learn something new your brain will thank you. Retrieved from

Saturday, January 12, 2013

The Doorway to Professional Learning Communities

It is with great enthusiasm I am announcing to the world that I am beginning my journey to become the best Instructional Designer this world has seen! (applause please) I believe that I have the skills needed to offer this exciting job market and that by  obtaining this certification I will get the guidance needed to apply these skills in an organized manner.  Watch out world, here I come!

I have been considered this job opportunity for several years and follow many blogs about Instructional Design.  My number one favorite blog is The Rapid E-Learning Blog.  This blog features colorful graphics and frequent updates. The site shares practical tips to help you understand all things eLearning. Tom Kuhlmann, a veteran in the training industry, hosts the site. One of the reasons I am so attracted to this site is the way that Mr. Kuhlmann can get his readers motivated to want to succeed and grow. I am constantly amazed at the things he can get powerpoint to do; things I'm not sure that the creators even imaged it could do. In my book, Tom Kluhmann is the rock star of elearning.

I often look at the blog, The eLearning Coach written by Connie Malamed.  I am amazed at the content located on this site.  Ms. Malamen features eLearning Design, eLeaning 2.0, Cognition, Media, Reviews, Mobile, Business, and just a few Podcast.  The eLearning Coach should come with a warning label: Enter at your own risk, you will lose hours of time. Her posts are all interesting, well written and relevant to online learners, instructional designers, teachers, and learners. 

Finally, let's take a look at this refreshing blog Cathy Moore, Let's Save the World from Boring Elearning. Now, I don't know about you, but this sounds like my type of blog.  If I am going to be staring at my computer screen for hours at a time I enjoy a bit of humor. The first thing I read is that Ms. Moore claims to have "ideas that will help me develop action-packed learning materials for working adults." In one sentence she has me excited to read on!  I hope you will take notice of this blog, how well written it is and how visually appealing.  

So many blogs, so little time!  What's a learner to do? Three little letters.....RSS!