ETAD, Professional Development, Teaching and Instruction

Learning Out Loud- Adventures in Grad Studies

I have decided to jump in and embrace the world of graduate studies.  Pursuing my masters has been on my mind for a long time and has always been something I have wanted to do.  I love learning and opportunities to learn for me are invigorating.  After much thought I decided to focus my adventures in grad studies in the area of Educational Technology and Design (ETAD) through the University of Saskatchewan.  Many people have asked me why I chose technology and my short answers has been…because I have so much to learn in this area.  For me, the adventure has to be about LEARNING, my own  and ultimately the learning of my students.   

And so I have embarked on this learning journey with my first class- ETAD 802.6.  My professor Dr. Rick Schwier, has asked for us to write about something that we are passionate in order to share our passions with others.  After much mulling around I have decided to focus my posts around the idea of LEARNING, which is my passion.  I have come to believe that teaching is no longer about presenting students with information in bite sized pieces to be consumed.  That era ended when Google was born.  Today students have access to an outstanding amount of information when ever  they need it.  Google, and You Tube are becoming common place in their lives.  Information is everywhere, and often easier to access outside of the four walls of the classroom. 

So what can we, as teachers offer our students if it is not information?  LEARNING.  Teachers are learners.  We are in the profession of learning about learning and our insights and understandings can support students as they navigate through an ever-growing mountain of information.  I believe our job is more about teaching students how to learn, then what to learn. 

In order to support students in learning to learn, teachers need to model thinking out loud.  We need to share our learning adventures both past and present so that we can help our students become life long learners. Life long learning is one of the goals of  K-12 Education in Saskatchewan as articulated through the Broad Areas of Learning.  The Provincial Document Understanding Outcomes states that we want our students to  “demonstrate the understandings, abilities, and dispositions necessary to learn from subject discipline studies, cultural experiences, and other ways of knowing the world.  Such ways of knowing support students’ appreciation of Indigenous worldviews and learning about, with, and from others.  Students are able to engage in inquiry and collaborate in learning experiences that address the needs and interests of self and others.” 

Teachers need to support student learning and to do this we need to learn out loud.  By doing so our students can learn how to learn from us, as we share both our insights, thinking processes and mistakes.  Our students need to learn out loud, as well so that we can assess what they know and how to support them as they continue to grow as learners.  Technology has a place in this learning out loud. 

So I kick off my learning adventure with a promise…I am committed to learning out loud through my blog.  My hopes are to share my insights, thinking and mistakes.  I WILL learn out loud and in so doing try to embrace my need to be a  life long learner… after all that is what teaching is all about.

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6 thoughts on “Learning Out Loud- Adventures in Grad Studies”

  1. Hi Jen! I’m so excited for you starting this journey! It only gets better too the further you dive in! One thing that realy sticks with me from your post is the idea that teachers need to think outloud in order to support student learning. As I’m ending my graduate journey I can truly say that I see value in being open with students. Not only in the classroom but crealting a global oppeness as well. Opening the doors to what I’m thinking, wanting, hoping to achieve and allowing them to see that I’m willing to learn along with them is a powerful bridge in creating that two-way learner relationship. I think just by starting your blog and opening that line of communication with the world, you are already enhancing your students learning experience by role moddeling and saying “hey world, I’m here and I’m willing to share”!! Looking forward to hearing more!

  2. I love the idea of learning publicly, so it will serve as a model to your students along the way. It goes way beyond “learning stuff” and moves into promoting a posture of learning, a value of learning, and a recognition that the boundaries of learning exist inside of us, not inside schools — even well-connected schools.

    Looking forward to seeing what you come up with here!

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