For my blog on OEP, I reached out to Dr Verena Roberts via Twitter and lucky enough we were able to connect and have a great conversation. We went over many of the OEP topics we talked about in our ECI831 class and more. Have a listen below.
To learn more about Dr. Roberts and her work follow her on Twitter Dr Verena Roberts or check out her website.
One of the people Dr. Roberts mentioned to check out was Dr. Catherine Cronin. So I did on Twitter twitter.com/catherinecronin and checked out her website catherinecronin.net/ . Looking through Dr. Cronin's work was very interesting and gave me more insights into OEP. In particular, there was an article I found that was very thought provoking - http://www.irrodl.org./index.php/irrodl/article/view/3096/4301
Again my amazing ECI831 classmates are a huge part of my learning in this class. I feel our class models OEP with the projects we do,the community of learners we have, and with Dr. Couros as our compass.
I appreciated the way Melinda used her personal learning journey. Some in the past always focused on 'surface learning' as a way to 'educate' the people (more like give them only enough to they competently comply).
Daniel always writes a great post and his on OEP this week was no exception. One of the main reasons I got into teaching was that I love to learn too so I love those blurred lines of teacher / learner that he mentioned. Love the Sir Ken Robinson Ted Talk ... also love this one with the sketch noting that goes with it (makes a lot of sense especially with what we are learning). https://www.ted.com/talks/ken_robinson_changing_education_paradigms . I also can appreciate the challenges he has to make OEP come a reality in his current environment.
I appreciated the views from Loreli (and love the work she is doing with Unicorn Spit - I just love saying that too haha). She reminded me of some of the obstacles / challenges with OEP including access to resources, specific knowledge needed for some programs, and the 'openness' needed by both teacher and learner (something Dr. Roberts mentioned in our conversation too).
So to sum it all up:
What do you see as the benefits and drawbacks of this type of practice?
- unlimited learning opportunties
- learning is not limited to what teacher gives
-tap the resources around you (social media, parents, experts, peers)
-tackle meaningful and wicked problems/challnges
-become an independent learner
-share ideas with the world
-create passionate learners
-breakdown learning barriers
-develop many types of literacies
-access open resources
- more joy in learning
- access to materials / devices
- curriculum outcomes being met
- comfort level of teacher and/or student
- other stakeholders (parents/admin/other teachers) perceptions
- those who like/good with traditional methods (playing school)
- those who want us to get 'back to basics'
These are a few that come to mind (I will probably revisit and add more). Can you please help me with my list? :-)
What might taking up OEP look like in your educational context?
I have been extremely fortunate to be able to take strides and have OEP experiences. I like taking risks (although I do my research and don't just do something for the sake of doing something) in the classroom. I have been also fortunate to have a lot of support from administration and my division with trying new things and have the resources to do so. I have had so many great students willing to try something new as well (not all on board though). I have had to work through assessment practices (like using a one point rubric, peer assessment, self assessment, different types of formative assessment). I embrace failure which I have had but definitely see as an opportunity to learn. I just think education should be more that memorizing a few facts, only a few feeling they are 'smart', and preparing students for their future (not reliving my past). So this topic of OEP has been great for me as it has contextualized a lot for me and gave be lots to think about (more questions than answers - which I'm open to).
connection its own track (we lost connection about 2/3 of the way through but were able to jump back on and finish (made new tracks which was no big deal) - can you tell where this happened?). Once the conversation is done you can download the tracks. I then used Audicity (freeware - donations welcome) to edit the tracks (take out a couple of 'noises' ,try to balance the levels for each speaker, and work with multiple tracks). I also used my Garageband app from my iPhone (this app comes with new iPhones) to make a little intro and outro music to import in as well. Finally, I needed somewhere to upload the file. I don't have the upload audio feature on weebly (need pro version - which I'm thinking of investing in) so I use Soundcloud. I was actually out of space here because of other podcast I have done, so I had to delete one to upload this podcast. It was a bit of a process, but totally worth it ... I like making and listening to podcasts.
Dean Vendramin. Educator for over 20 years. Currently Education Leader for Math/Science at Archbishop M.C. O'Neill Catholic High School. Have a passion for all things in education with emphasis on technology integration, assessment, professional development, and 21 Century Education. Posts are articles he has written for the Saskatchewan Teachers' Federation monthly newsletter The Bulletin, Saskatchewan Math Teachers' Society The Variable, blog requests from memberships he is a part of, and his own thoughts.