When I started this course, my schedule was a lot different from when I applied for the course, and making the Skype meetings was the most challenging aspect of the course for me. I just started a new job and therefore hesitated before starting the course, and I almost gave up after the first intense week. However, I am very glad I stuck with it!
I have been worrying a lot about my contribution to the group since I am not an experienced teacher and had very limited (very, very, very limited) knowledge about ONL, different tools and teaching in generally. I learned a lot from the facilitators and the other members of my group and hope that I could give them something in return. Also it was great to do something that was about me and my own learning, and maybe even more important than usual because I have been under a lot of pressure in my day job, the course actually became a welcome, fun and creative outlet that I enjoyed and now find myself missing.
Working in groups is always a challenge but I think this is one of the times when it worked out well and I have been thinking about what the magical ingredients that made it work this time is? Not sure I have cracked the code yet, but some of the things I think was important was the we talked and discussed over skype and had frequent meetings, in combination with reading each others blogg posts. This made us have a personal relationship even though we never met in real life. Also, I think the number of members in the group was key. It was a very good balance between not being to many and being enough members to ensure good discussions even if one or two could not make the meetings or for some reason could not continue the course. When I think back of group assignments that I have been part of or organized before the groups were often smaller, between 3-4 people, and I think I would have argued for small group/small problems with collaboration prior to this course, and this is something that have changed after this experience.
Early on in the course I started to make a list of tools and resources that I came across and wanted to try out and it became pretty long:
G+ and Adobe connect, to start with, and then:
https://tagul.com/ word cloud art
Ted ed: you can inbed questions and quizzes into existing youtube films that are published under CC https://www.playposit.com/
And the very cool part is that I have looked in to each of these, some more than others, but this have really opened up my world. I think that power point is most likely a distant presentation memory, and I will be able to use this in my research and clinical work as well since communication of material is key also in these settings. Even if my skills with these tools are still limited I think I have a good basis for using them when I give lectures in the future and by doing so improve my teaching while still continuing to learn myself. For me the course was a lot about coming across and trying out new tools. A more experienced ONL teacher probably would describe their learning outcomes differently after completing the course. From my perspective this has also been the strength of the course. The design and structure made it possible for participants to have very different experience with ONL and teaching prior to the course and still enjoy, learn and continue to develop through out, and this is also something that I will bring to the next course or lecture that I will teach when planning content and learning activities.
The design of the different topics, with an increasing level of complexity was really good and kept us on our toes making sure that our learning curves stayed steep throughout the course. I also very much appreciate the facilitator and co-facilitator that probably was our most important “tools” when attacking the scenarios.
Writing this post I realize that I will miss ONL162 a lot, and hope that there will be continuing activity in my PBL group as well as on the main site.
Final words: I love Prezi!